Sometimes the shoulders just seem like they might buckle from the weight of it all, don't they? Watching my Dad in his final year and my family's struggle with mental illnesses, age-related and otherwise, there were more moments of utter despair than I care to remember. So many days of never-ending sadness would pass by that I thought I might never come through. I did get through, forever changed, but I got through. So we grasp at whatever we can to keep our heads above water so we don't sink into the abyss. Not everyone avoids the abyss and I have found myself clawing my way out of it more than once over the years. As I watch and feel the pain of so many friends and loved ones, I fervently hope they can find their way to healing by whatever means necessary. After more than a few painful chapters of my life, I stumbled on to my method by literally grasping for moments; moments of bliss or laughter or silliness or stillness that carry me through.
A few weeks ago, I was driving to work pre-dawn and was not in a good state of mind. I stopped to get coffee and as I was circling through the drive-thru, I said a little prayer for help to see me through my dour mood. As I circled to the other side and back on the road, the sun had peeked gloriously over the horizon in truly breathtaking fashion; a masterful palette of gorgeous color unlike any I had ever seen. At the same time, a song played on the radio I had never heard: Amos Lee's Windows Are Rolled Down. The song's lyrics have been debated...some say that windows being rolled down refers to facing one's mortality, some say its finding new hope, others interpret it as making peace with ones past. Whatever the true meaning, I derived great comfort from the song. Suddenly, I was transported to more carefree days of cruising down the highway with hometown friends with music cranked and indeed, windows rolled down.
Today, I sought the photos on this post...random photos of the family kids, cooking, playing, finding their own joy. These made me feel better; these photos were my sunrise today. Some days the sunrise is easier to find than others. Sometimes it arrives when you least expect it. Just don't stop looking for it.
The video below is Amos Lee's Windows Are Rolled Down.