Recapturing Joy and Racing Unicorns
This year for Christmas, we went of this amazing road trip to Colorado. My husband had three weeks off, and for that little stretch of time, all was right with the world.
Then we came home.
Do you know where I'm going with this?
He went back to work. My daughter came down with ear infections and pink eye. And I went back to being Nurse Mom with all hands on deck.
It was rough. It still is rough. But yesterday, after extended quarantine, my daughter and I somehow managed to make it outside. It was cold and about to rain, but we collected sticks and rocks, and went exploring to the edge of our property and back.
It didn't matter that the ground was soft and the breeze was stiff. My daughter ran with abandon, like she was racing unicorns and soaring to the very ends of the earth. Her cheeks flushed and her boots got muddy, but she laughed like laughing made spoonfuls of ice cream bloom in her mouth. After a miserable week, it was absolutely delightful.
I watch her so much these days, amazed at this miraculous creation unfolding before me. The magic of a growing little girl. She doesn't know to be afraid. She doesn't know to suck in her stomach or temper her voice or wait for someone else to take the lead.
She is unabashed and unafraid. Completely unfettered by cultural narratives that will tell her to be ashamed.
She is pre-fear. And it is unreal.
It's sweet and sad and tender all at the same time. Because I never want her to lose it. And I grieve that I did.
The journey of being a woman seems to be more of a rewind and an excavation more than anything else. An uncovering of all the tender parts that haven't seen the light of day in years. But it's also coupling that tender innocence and joy with steely resolve and unflinching courage. Becoming the warrior who can take on the world.
I wish the world was more kind to girls. And I wish I could protect my daughter from the onslaught of negativity awaiting her.
I suppose as her mom, it's my job to fight for that innocence and joy. To provide an alternative narrative that allows for a different way of being. I'll do it gladly, and I'll impart to her all of the courage I can muster.
Today I hope each of us can feel a little bit of our natural, innate freedom, and run like we're racing unicorns. And I hope that we can feel infused with the courage to embrace our joy and protect it against the negativity seeking to devour it.
Cheers to you, dear fly girls, on your journey today. Go get those unicorns.