i haven’t felt much like communicating lately. i stay in my head most of the time, because that’s where i feel safest…least likely to be intruded upon by more bad news, new disappointments or the epidemic of strollers filled with six-month-old babies that’s recently broken out. my well-padded list of friends has gotten rather gaunt these last few months, and there aren’t too many people left with whom i have the energy to share even a few of my words.
i feel lost in this city. there is beauty all around me, and i still walk for hours taking it all in.
it helps me to walk, but i feel more alone in the crowds i encounter than i do anywhere else. people are grumpy and impatient, too much in a hurry to extend the most basic of human kindnesses. the city stresses me out, and there don’t seem to be too many places to escape to.
i’ve been feeling so very low lately, so completely alone and lost. hopeless was hanging heavy on me, and then the other night i started thinking about el Camino de Santiago. i walked a part of it many years ago, but i hurt myself while i was crossing the Pyrenees. after struggling with a swollen, painful knee and the heavy ball of disappointment in my stomach, i stopped my first Camino. it didn’t turn out how i’d wanted it to, but that meager week i spent as a peregrina affected me powerfully, and i’ve always known i’d go back. before little sun, i’d dreamt of doing parts of it with Froggy and our children. i figured it would be at least a decade in the future before i would carry a backpack with a shell on it again. suddenly, though, i feel that road calling to me, and the only thing to do is follow it. at first i was worried about paying for such a trip. the Camino can easily be done on the cheap, but travel to and from Spain and all the gear i will need….those things cost a bit more. now that we’re trying to conceive a little sister or brother, money has been on my mind a lot. traveling out of the country once a month for fertility treatments is not cheap, and if IUIs don’t work, we might have to move on to a more expensive option.
when i told Froggy what i was thinking, how i felt pulled back to Spain and to that pilgrimage that i haven’t yet finished, she surprised me by saying that my trip would be her birthday present to me. she didn’t want me taking 18 hour bus trips or sleeping on floors, she wanted me to be safe and comfortable. i’d worried that she wouldn’t understand why i need to go or that she wouldn’t be able to handle being alone for two weeks, but i underestimated her. i may not be lucky in many things, but i have most certainly won the partner lottery.
so now i am planning and dreaming, wondering if i’ll make it to Santiago de Compostela this summer and wondering what i’ll find on my way there.
in these days of silence, i’ve been drawing some more. the picture at the top of this post is my latest work. i call it “Away”.
that’s where i’ll be soon.