I crack open the blinds to discover what I had anticipated. Sun. Light streaming in through the window, I quickly open all the blinds to let more of it in, until the house is alive with sun, until sun sheds its light on me.
I’m startled by Benjamin’s appearance, his hand on my arm. I didn’t hear him come down the stairs. Hair rumpled and face still soft with sleep he says, “Mommy, my chest hurts.”
I bend to him, my ear to his chest, “Okay, take a deep breath.”
Ben’s small chest rises and falls. “Another breath. Really big.”
There it is. A faint rattle. “Alright, go grab your blue puffer.”
I tidy the kitchen and Ben returns. He holds up two fingers. “I took one, two puffs.”
I ask, “How do you feel?”
“Well, why don’t you get changed and we’ll see how you feel in a few minutes.”
It’s time to begin a new day, a new week and I don’t feel ready. I’ve filled out school field trip forms, called the pharmacy to refill Ben’s prescription and lunches are made. I shiver and wrap my arms around myself.
I woke up to anxiety, my eyes snapping open at 5am. I showered, hoping worry would wash away. I carried anxiety down the stairs and tried to put it down, to leave it with my laundry as I stuffed it into the washer, to place it on the counter with the dishes, but it clung to my chest and furrowed my brow.
I need to breathe. Just breathe.
I gaze out the windows and I take stock. I’m stressed. I’m waiting. Are my kids okay? Is Annie doing too much? Money’s tight. March is busy already. What am I doing? What am I doing? Good things are coming. They have to be, right?
“Benjamin, how are you feeling?”
He’s at the dining room table crafting, assembling a small house made of foam. “This is making me feel so much better.”
I smile and kiss the top of his head, bury my nose in his bedraggled hair inhaling the scent of him – of shampoo and little boy. What is that saying? Life is what happens while you’re waiting.
I look up.
Through the blinds, through the glass there is sun, blue sky, glory.
I draw a deep breath. A little anxiety falls to the floor.
I want; I need to let the light in. And when I do I feel so much better.
In The Civil Wars
I love all kinds of music, but I especially love music that makes me feel and these guys make me feel. One of my favorite songs of theirs is Poison & Wine. Check it out here.