God has been working on me, with me, and carrying me. His presence is evident to me in more ways than I can count. Honestly, sometimes the lessons are coming at me so fast and furious that it almost causes me to shut down because it’s more than I can swallow.
Easter came and went and we made it. I have been counting down the days until Mother’s Day, anxious for it to arrive and anxious to get through it. This was always Emmer’s special day where we rearranged our day to be with her however she wanted. With three generations of Moms now at two, it fell on my shoulders and Mom’s shoulders to decide how to celebrate Mother’s Day, which included remembering all that Emmer was and will continue to be through our lives.
The weatherman predicted rain, but as usual, he was wrong. It was a gorgeous day with sunshine and just the right amount of wind to keep it cool. Johnny grilled fabulous pineapple teriyaki burgers and shrimp skewers while we munched on Emmer’s favorite cheese straws. We topped off dinner with Hershey’s golden nuggets. For all who knew Emmer, I suspect you have already pictured in your head the small delicate gold basket that always held just a few chocolates which she always offered anytime you visited. We made it, and I think when I fell into bed Sunday night I finally felt myself exhale.
Yesterday I felt like I was ready to turn the page to a new chapter and take another step forward. Moving past Mother’s Day had given me strength. Running has been my “go-to” for almost 9 years. But I hadn’t run since Christmas. I had been out of town and then Emmer got sick. After she died, for a lot of reasons, I just didn’t want to run. Life and a busy sports schedule are keeping me at the ballpark every Saturday and the road had no appeal. A bit of fear about a seizure while running alone was creeping in as well. In my Mom’s ever so subtle way of encouraging me to run again she gave me a new pair of running shoes for Mother’s Day. Yesterday I decided my shoes needed breaking in. I laced them up and put on my new running shirt Mom bought me from the Boston Marathon Store on Boylston just a week after the bombings. I headed out the back door and hit start on my watch. One step at a time, one foot in front of the other. After about a half mile it began to feel a bit familiar. My goal wasn’t speed and it wasn’t distance. My goal was to just get the feel of the pavement. A little over 3 miles later I was back home. My shoulders felt a bit lighter and I think I may have been standing a little taller as I walked down the driveway cooling off.
I won’t promise myself or anyone else that I will be on the road today, but in time I will have the strength and the desire to return to regular programming. Yesterday’s run was a step in that direction. Grieving, growing, grooming, and now finally going. I’m not going to rush anything, because that accomplishes nothing. I’m taking my time, learning as I move forward and making sure that I take steps forward in my time the way that I need to. Emmer was a tremendous source of strength for me. Her loss is huge but I’m learning each day how to channel her strength and use it to propel me forward.
Grieving, growing, grooming and going. One day at a time, one step at a time. It’s all progress.
Copyright © Gatewood Campbell, May 2013