Thursday, August 06, 2009

Midlife Crisis, chapter 2

The long view.

"It doesn't get any easier," said T~, the tall man swimming, and smiling in the lane next to me. We were at the gym, and I'd just come up for air after a challenging drill. I hadn't met him yet, but it turns out my sage of the swimming pool is a national top-ten champion in his age bracket. But not just any age bracket. T~ is eighty-seven years old. He might just know what he's talking about.

"Oh, why do I bother?" I replied, thinking of so much more than swimming laps.

T~ chuckled gently. "Sometimes I ask myself the same thing."

There's the operative word, folks: Sometimes.

Because sometimes it - life, laps, infertility - feels every inch as hard as it is. Sometimes it feels like mild drudgery, surmountable, but dull. Yet other times, it's really okay. And sometimes, some times, every once in a rare while, everything feels easy and great. You never know quite which you're going to get, but you have to show up to find out. And that is the answer in a nutshell. That is why I bother.

The other day I braved the heat and went for a run, my usual 6-mile loop from my house through my rural neighborhood, thinking all the way: look how lucky I am. I get to live in this beautiful place. I have a loving husband. I have a solid, cozy home, challenging, fulfilling work, health insurance, and not a penny of debt. I have a 39-year-old body that can run six miles with relative ease!

After my run, sweat-drenched, I peeled off my shoes and dove directly into my neighbor's pool. (I have a lovely neighbor who practically begs me to use her pool whenever I like.)

A week later I retraced my steps with a camera, counting my blessings, and documenting them too. A few of those pictures are included here.

Maybe I'm emerging from my midlife crisis. Or maybe this is a temporary reprieve. Whatever it is, I didn't want to let it slip by.

J~ took the week off last week. Perfect timing for ovulation - let's just say we put in our best effort yet.

I'll keep you posted.

Runner's heaven - a long dirt road through the woods.

Great Blue Heron on a beaver's dam - what a lucky day to be carrying a camera!

Joe pye weed in full bloom.

The pool next door - all of the cool, none of the work.

Warmth for the coming winter, one more cord on the way.