These days I’ve been thinking a lot about how different life was for many of my friends and me, say, five years ago. Even if we’d grown up with difficult things, most of us hadn’t yet seen our adult life be rearranged by them.
Now, when I look at my circle of women?
I see women in the trenches. One is on a plane right now to say goodbye to a dying friend. Another is fighting hard for funding for needed services for her child. Another is finalizing divorce papers. Another working hard to pay the bills for her parents. Another is trying–again–to get her sister to rehab.
Yes, there is a lot of joy and love and so many blessings in each of our lives too. But it feels like someone is whispering in my ear: Tara, what you used to think of difficult crises, extreme circumstances, are in fact, entirely ordinary parts of adulthood. This incarnation is not for the faint of heart.
If any of our hardships take us away from joy – which I’m not sure they do – I know this: they also bring us closer to love.
When I look around my circle now, I see women whose faces have been made soft by tears and tiredness and trying to change things they had to eventually realize they could not change. Because of all of that, you can see in their faces that they are ready to listen, and empathize, and love. And they do. We are far better to each other because of what we’ve all been through.
Life carves us into warriors, and life kneads us into softness.
Sending love to you today.
photo credit: Kelly Sikkema