I was writing out the word "Maryland" at work today, and it suddenly occurred to me that if I lived in Maryland, I would want to change my name to Mary, and then make friends with someone else named Mary so that we could sing "This Land is Your Land" together. It was one of the first moments in a long time where I started to feel a little bit like myself again, and it was so significant to me that I wanted to share it with the whole world. I don't imagine that, had I shared my little musing with anyone, they would have seen it as anything but silly and a bit absurd.
To me, that thought felt like a little bit of light cracking through especially dark storm clouds for the first time in a dark mid-western winter. Those of you who have spent a winter in the mid-west know what I'm talking about. Sometime in late October, the sun goes away, and isn't really seen again for months. I remember instances in college where the sun would come out in February, and everyone would peel off their outerwear, despite the 20-something degree weather, and just bask in the glory of sunlight for a bit. It's exactly what I did today: basked in the flow of sunlight, despite circumstances that would normally encourage different behavior.
In July after we found out we were moving, I went into survival mode. We had so much to do, to prepare prior to our departure. Mentally, physically, emotionally, it was a lot to handle. And even after we moved, it has been a lot to handle. I haven't stepped out of survival mode, and next week will mark 6 months since we moved here. Survival mode has been good to me in a lot of ways. It got us all out here in a mostly orderly and organized fashion, it helped me gain employment, and it helped us start to establish routines and patterns in our lives. It has helped us rebuild our life in a new and wonderful place. But until today, I could not start to enjoy all of these things that I had built.
The stress, the pressure, the overwhelm, it's still there. We are not settled into permanent housing yet, although that is hopefully just around a bend. We still don't have a good support system yet, and I don't feel comfortable in my new life. But for a few minutes today, I was back to my normal self.
It was bliss.