It is so hard to be without


How many inspirational quotes have you read about the word journey? I equate journey to the word life, excluding when I have blinders tightly fastened for fear I will venture outside the narrow trajectory of my next step. That is not living, that is merely existing, a topic for another morning.

It is good to have an end to journey towards, but is the journey that matters in the end,”

Ursula LeGuin, Courage to Change, December 13

I read this quote a few times this morning, attempting to understand what made it so unusual. Journey is both a verb and a noun. Just like living and life.

My heart was full yesterday with joy and happiness about my own journey and my gratitude for those I have met along the way, welcomed into my life, and for those, to whom I have said goodbye. After an Al-Anon meeting, a call with my sister and best friend, and a yoga class where my abdominal hernia made an ugly an unwelcome appearance, I felt like this:

I feel empty, I feel tired, I feel worn
Nothing really matters anymore
Ryan Adams, To Be Without You

By day’s end, my heart was heavy with sadness. I watched this YouTube of Ryan Adams performing my favorite song of the year.

Why love such a sad song? Lyrics like “I feel empty, I feel tired, I feel worn” make me yearn for a freshly laundered blanket to envelop my sadness and absorb my tears. The first time I heard this song I stopped the car and cried. This song resonates with me because of its honesty. The lyrics are simple and raw, and his tone acutely sincere.  When I listen I picture myself so many nights, wishing that he was here.

So today I’ll invite the sadness, and I’ll journey through it so I truly appreciate the end: Joy.


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