Driving Lessons

Insomnia is my demon right now. We all go through struggles and quite frankly, that is mine.

Patting the crown of my best friend, Erin, feeling her hair as I would always do as long as we have known each other, I told her, “I’m going home now.” She looked at me, slightly disappointed. We and a group of several of her friends were all celebrating her birthday.

“I’ve become a grandma recently. I’m in bed by 11:30 or 12:00,” I added.

Something was wrong, though, by the time my dad and I had arrived back at our house. My sinuses were flaring up awfully in reaction to the dander of Erin’s dogs. I was convinced that I was doomed to crash after a day of walking around, causing a raucous and sporadically snapping pictures. ‘God I can’t do this…I’m tired…please, I just wanna do the dishes in the morning,’ I prayed. I managed to trudge my sniffling self down the stairs to make some pau d’arco tea after having taken a shower. While the water was warming up I looked over at the sink, and then I looked back over to the stove. Sighing, I took the character building opportunity to clean the few dishes resting in the sink.

Many times I had found myself there. I experienced joy, anger, confusion, frustration, bitterness, sadness, depression, and it was all over this simple house commodity. In the same way it was character building to remain disciplined, committing a fleeting and spare moment to a necessary house chore, so were all those collective moments I had spent for many years up until the day at that very place.

Awoken by congestion, I was violently awakened after only two hours of sleep, and I was still hungry. Seeing friends had distracted me from the urgency of nourishing myself. I drank fluids, ate a small snack, read several pages in a book (How God Changes Your Brain) and I watched a video profile of an illustrator. The wind was roaring just outside my window. Sounds like that of a football stadium emanated from its pane. I would soon press the laptop screen down, flick off the bedside lamp, only to awake what seemed like thirty minutes later. I peered halfway out from underneath the blanket. ‘Hey, I feel better…‘ I mused, readying myself to pray and begin my spiritual preparations.

That brings us to this morning.

Connie’s questions that she rehashes in the video are so reminiscent of those which I would commonly ask myself. Yes, I myself once turned away. Even so, there is no one to blame anymore, though. Not myself. Not my parents. Not those who hurt me in school, on the streets, in the workplace; because, after all, do the rats really die when we drink the rat poison? That’s a set up for major disappointment if someone expects such an outcome.

The world is wondrous, fresh and new
It often holds surprises for me and you
And when in doubt, don’t shout out in despair
no one ever said that life was always fair
I’ve been down and out… And at the top of the pillar
But willow weep for me no more
Like I told the bold,the old
No mold is gonna grow under my feet
My problems can all be beat
With a fleet a neat beats that shake the meat that walks the street
My friend Reed says “don’t feed the greed that’s all we need
So press the flesh you love the best
Be happy you see and keep on rhyming with me
~ D. Marsh

My father surprised me with this, which I found posted on his Facebook profile only moments after I had put my foot in my mouth. He has been urging people to amend his improvisational poetry ever since his birthday party from the weekend prior. Gradually, I saw the verses take a more poignant turn. It does not surprise me. Not just a musician but also a phenomenal artist–that’s my papa.

I meant to send a text to my godmother earlier this morning in which I was asking for spiritual guidance concerning how to deal with my dad. But guess what? That ended up being mindlessly sent to my dad’s phone…

By far, this was one of the most painful days that marks this present season of my life. I have to be a constant, consistent practitioner of what I preach nonetheless. Just as I had told my friend, Neiko, from yesterday: problems are opportunities in disguise. I responded to my inquiring dad, who seemed bewildered and irritated by the text mistakingly sent to his phone, and openly confessed the fact that I pray for my him out of deep concern and love, as he’s my dad. I love him. While I was standing over the same sink he looked at me in such a way…a look I now resolve never to give anyone and especially not my children when I become a mother.

I have done many things wrong in my life. In the same way I want to be forgiven (in the same way I want my papa to experience the ultimate, life-altering grace of God) I also want to forgive.
This is a two-way street. We have to share the road.


One thought on “Driving Lessons

  1. Pingback: Sitting down on Sundays: Hay que ver | Come Walk With Me

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