Be the river…that’s what keeps coming to me today, be the river.
It’s tempting for me to berate myself for the lack of writing I’ve done lately. I spiral out of control when I give in to that thinking though. Invariably it ends with all kinds of “I told you so’s” from my own insecurities. Insecurities thrive on the self-fulfilling prophecy of “I told you so.”
Instead of that as I drove to drop off my kids at their arts camps this morning, having missed the bus…again…I was thinking then about the river. I was thinking about the constant movement, the rise and fall, the unearthed rocks that come up as the water flows overtop. I was thinking about the deep bends and steep curves. I was thinking about the start never being the same as the finish. What begins on a mountaintop somewhere far off as a trickling bit of moisture seeping from rocks, a conduit for the melting snow, a catcher of the falling rain, ends then in the bounteous blue of an ocean or lake, part of something bigger, something strong and defined.
It’s not the beginning or even the end that hit me today on that long drive this morning, having missed the bus…again. What hit me was what happens in the middle. We have no choice really but to be the river, to follow the course, to take it as it comes. Everything we do dredges up the soil and deposits it on a bank somewhere, making room for new things to spring to life there. Every bend, every curve throws us in a new direction, it’s disorienting and exhilarating. If I spend too much time thinking about the mountaintop I left or the ocean I’m approaching I really do lose sight of the fact that I am yet, still, always the river and I am in motion.
So today on that drive I let myself be the river. “This is what I’m doing right now, this moment. This is where I flowing” I pondered to myself. There is no absence of things written, there is no pressure to be anything more or less than the person I am right now, at this point, behind this wheel, having this conversation with these four cranky young people in my car.
This is the reminder I’m giving myself today…
Be the river.