walking through walls
Each of her veils, a secret promise
This desert flower
No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this
Well, I bet you’re wondering where Mary’s been of late. Well, she’s been on a bit of a sabbatical for a time. Doing all the things we all do as we seek our place in the world. Something we all must do at some point in life. No getting around it. Kayaks are, as we know not the most important things in life. Then suddenly last week, for the first time in what seems like ages Mary just jumped in the Romany and with a moment’s hesitation reached back for that body memory, set up and rolled, and rolled and rolled. Mary the kayaker has returned!
One thing most of you don’t know is that Mary suffers from an almost nightmarish fear of water. Well, she did anyway. Then this whole kayaking thing started. While I’m out learning to roll or play in surf, Mary had to take tiny steps along the way to slay her dragon. For some, rolling is not about technique, it’s about overcoming a very real fear of being engulfed in a liquid world where everything around you is a surreal, blurry universe without air. It can be a terrifying place. From a time when she could not stand ankle deep in liquid, she moved to sitting in a kayak, forcing herself to fall out, and finally learning to roll. All the while the demon was standing on her shoulder. Then, suddenly and without notice, the demon took her. She was again forced to watch from the beach. It was tough. Over the last year she hardly ever sat in boat. Kayaks became representative of fear and failure. And kayaks in our world are everywhere. kayaking is part of our life. Something she hears about everyday. Conversations just punctuated those fears and made her feel worse about what she was dealing with. So she stopped coming along. It was too hard to watch everyone having fun and feeling somehow like the kid who was not good enough to play too. Of course no one felt that way, and kayaking is just kayaking. No one said she had to paddle. Yet she really wanted to. She wanted to play too. Then recently as I began rolling in the pool daily, she began learning to swim. Slowly with a pfd at first. Weeks past. Then she started swimming without the gear. Then in the deep water with me near by. Then on her own. Until last week when she started for the first time ever, Jumping off the diving board. Wow!
What’s more she’s been off getting buff and tough as we found out last night when she demonstrated how 2 months working out every day at the gym brought on the ability to pin my silly hide when all I really wanted to do was throw another dart from my place about 15 yards from the board. Yeah, you have to be careful when I play darts. I’ve found it much more fun to go for the three pointer! (to mix my sports metaphors) I get a silly joy standing as far away as possible and just arc those dogs in. Double Outs’ a bit tough though.
So today’s post is for Mary. Watching her return to life and life in the water has been like watching a flower bloom. Like the return of spring. Welcome back Mary. Good work, good job and it’s great to see you rolling again. I’m very proud of you!
On the other hand that means I get to look forward to people stepping past me to say, “Hey, you’re Mary aren’t you!??” Well, that’s ok. She’s worked for it.