I have a good life. Not much to complain about when it comes down to it really, except for a weird tail-less cat trying to climb up my leg, not enough hours in the day, unfinished projects and cold toes.
But some days, during a break in the morning news, I cry at the Walgreens commercial.
And the commercial for a web browser that tells the story about a dad sending his daughter off to college. And then they video chat.
And anything with a cute baby or a puppy or a grampa or a soldier coming home.
And lately I cry at the weather report.
Now, don’t get all worried about me yet. I’m not sure I would be diagnosed with any emotional disorder, although Husband has diagnosed me simply “emotional.”
And he’s right.
I spend quite a bit of my life laughing though, so I figure I’m balanced.
But I admit, some days are worse than others. I admit it because I’m human and I know you’re human (unless you’re a dog and humans haven’t discovered your abilities to access the web without thumbs) and we all have days like these.
Days that send me running for the hills.
I’ve learned over the course of my nearly 30 (gasp!) years alive in this breathtaking and heartbreaking place it’s the only thing to do to recover my senses and gain my balance and center myself once more.
I remove my body from the television screen, the radio, the music, the computer and all of those heartbreaking, heartwarming and heart wrenching stories and just try to live in my own for a moment.
It hasn’t been easy to do this lately, between the life-threatening cold temperatures, scheduled meetings and darkness that falls too early in the winter, I’ve had to make a special space in my day for clarity.
It’s why I keep an extra pair of snow boots and a furry hat in my car just in case. You never know when you might have a chance to escape.
I found one yesterday afternoon. I had a few of those teary moments over coffee and the news while I moved through my morning trying to pull it together, get to the office, make it to the meeting, keep up on emails, plan for an event, meet a deadline and live comfortably in pretty work sweaters between four walls.
4:30 came around and I had a meeting at 6.
An hour and a half hours would do it.
I got in my car and pointed it toward a favorite refuge, the only other place in the world beside the ranch where I can look winter in the face and call it truly beautiful.
I really love it in the winter.
And it never lets me down.
So in 15 minutes I was there, turning off of the highway and following the snow coated road toward the river and the buttes,
I drove slowly to admire the lighting. I rolled down my window a bit to feel the fresh, 20 degree air and pulled over where the road ends, next to a trail that can take you to the top of it all.
I checked my watch. I had 20 minutes before I needed to turn my car around and head back to my other world. I was in my town coat and dangly earrings.
I switched out my fancy boots for snow boots, covered my hair with a beanie and trudged on up there, slipping and sliding and panting because, well, I just felt like it.
I felt like climbing.
Because this is what winter looks like in the badlands.
This is what it looks like from the top of it all…
Especially for the beautiful things.