It’s 147 steps to the water. Water where I can breathe. Water where I can think. 147 steps.
Sometimes I walk there. Sometimes I can hardly crawl. Sometimes I bust out my front door, leaving shoes or jackets or anything rational on the porch, and run frantic like my clothes are on fire to the very end. On the way, words, thoughts, conversations desperate for expression turn to water, and I realize, it’s probably the only way they will ever be spoken.
I breathe in the brackish air and it helps me reset. Like a jolt to the system, full lungs after gasping. I am met by birds and fish and little crabs that scurry back to their secret places. Curious dolphins stop by. Blue herons skim the reeds. All of us are searching. We are all looking for what sustains us, what will keep us alive.
I’m allowed to rest here. I don’t have to be on, I don’t have to behave nicely, I don’t have to wear the right clothes or makeup or do my hair. The people who own this precious path to the river, they don’t care. They just want me to come - it’s a gift they’ve given me - anonymity, privacy, peace. They know I’m bone tired. That regardless that I try so hard, I can never quite get it all done, be as brave or tolerant as I should, or that I will ever measure up to what people expect me to be. They see me wearing thin. They worry, but they let me breathe. They know that prayer and solitude is healing and they offer both. They also are fully aware that Jesus and salt water heal all wounds. They just let me come - and I love them for it.
I love the path to the river, the river that beckons me again today... 147 steps away
Tara is Greg's girl, mom to two sons of thunder, a hunger fighter, big dreamer and worship pastor at seacoast church.