Photo by Alina Chupakhina on Unsplash
I’m picking blackberries on my grandmother’s property by the sea. The kids have abandoned their buckets to go play on the beach. I decide to stay and gather more for a little while longer. I walk down the hill looking for the ripe ones. They hang in beautiful clumps of black, begging to be popped into my mouth and enjoyed. I’m a butterfly in search of sweet.
I reach through the brambles, slowly, trying to avoid the thorns. Wearing my mother’s thick gloves I push empty branches aside, cutting them off with gardening shears. Thorns tug at me, catching me and pulling me back with a surprising force that stops me from moving forward. One by one I release them from the fabric of my sweater. They scratch my legs, my hands, but I keep on searching, keep on finding, keep on gathering.
You know the days that start with the best of intentions, are those not always the days destined for disaster? You decide a smoothie cleanse is for the best, and you prep and freeze Every. Single. One. But then, the fruit is too frozen, your blender too weak. And you’re hungry and tired and quit by hour two. And then the kids won’t eat any meal you prepare for them. And everything you try and pour that day will inevitably spill All. Over. The. Floor. And instead of doing all the things you had hoped to do that day, you end up falling asleep on the couch.
These days are the thorny days. When all that was once whole slowly starts to unravel. When the nastiness wants to grab a hold of you and take you down. When those quiet voices become a little louder reminding you of all the ways you’ve failed. Making you believe a little less in yourself and a little more in the lies that say you’re weak, you’re lost. Making you believe there is no goodness for you, that sweetness is out of your reach.
These are the days we just need to fight a little harder. And plant our feet in the promise that this isn’t the end, that our story’s not over yet. When the darkness is seeping in and trying to dig it’s claws into us, we need to claim what it is we want as ours. Is it Truth, is it Peace, is it Joy, is it Love? We need to shake off the thorns and cut them away. We need to keep finding our way to the fruit.
The fight might start in the dark but we’ll finish in the Light.
These are the days we grow in compassion for ourselves. As we learn to accept the way things are. As we ground ourselves in love, we grow in strength.
These are the days when I suggest we sing a little louder, jump a little higher, smile a little wider. And at the end of the day we take a breath, wash our feet clean, and let our pillows welcome us into their always-accepting arms.
A fresh start, a new beginning, is always on her way in the morning.