Feb 22, 2010

Like the Swallow

I've been debating for a while about this post. Whether I really had the guts to begin to talk about it, even to begin to think about it. Whether I really needed to work it out for myself or just I could let it keep sleeping, hidden under the surface. I think I need to... even though it's not the sort of thing I normally talk about. I mean, who really wants the darker parts of themselves on display? So, if you're looking for a cheerful, ain't life cute post, today ain't the day. (May I suggest LOLCats instead?) But if you don't mind digging in my psyche with me, come on along.

First and foremost, I'm an adrenaline junkie. Most pilots are. Even when I'm in total control of the aircraft, that adrenaline rush of landing, the kiss of tires on tarmac is beyond compare. I like speed - the faster the better. This is not to say I don't have common sense. I understand the need to control that demand for faster, higher, farther for the sake of others.

Living on that kind of edge is not a place for mothers. It's not fair to my children to put myself at risk like that. As long as there are lives that depend on me, it's my responsibility to put them first.

But I crave the danger. And it's not enough to speed or fly. There's a part of me that wants to be dangerous. That is dangerous. This is the part that lives deepest within. The part that screams with the need to express physical rage. The part that blinds that common sense. The calculating cruelty that I cannot seem to excise from my soul. Part demon, part merciless avenging angel.

I have no outlet for that part of me. Neither my vocations nor my avocations allow for violence. I am trapped: by my life, by my love, by myself. I'm fat, clumsy, and middle-aged; when I see my reflection as I exercise, I realize my only danger to others is if I sit on them. I'm hardly going to take up being an assassin or some such at this point in my life yet there is a deep part of me that needs to let that avenging angel soar.

In a few years, when all the kids are in school, I want to learn to sword fight. Yes, it's a useless skill (unless, of course, there's an apocalypse rendering ammunition impossible to come by - then it might be useful) but it calls to me. There are times I wonder whether another lifetime saw me metal-clad and armed. I don't know whether this "pretend" dangerousness will be enough to let the angel rest more quietly, keep the demon locked away.

It scares me, the need. Even as I physically crave the danger, the craving scares me.
Who am I to need that? Logically, it makes no kind of sense. Neither my place in life, nor my faith in God permits it. If I am to trust God, I am where I should be. And where I am distinctly precludes walking the edge.

On a wagon, bound for market
there's a calf that is born to die.
High above him, there's a swallow
winging swiftly through the sky.

How the winds are laughing, they laugh with all their might,
laugh and laugh the whole day through and half the summer's night.

"Stop complaining," said the farmer,
"Who told you a calf to be?
Why don't you have wings to fly with
like the swallow so proud and free."

How the winds are laughing, they laugh with all their might,
laugh and laugh the whole day through and half the summer's night.

Calves are easily bound and slaughtered,
never knowing the reasons why.
But whoever treasures freedom,
like the swallow, must learn to fly.

How the winds are laughing, they laugh with all their might,
laugh and laugh the whole day through and half the summer's night.

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Blogger LJ said...

My first thought is: If you are thinking it (swordfighting) God is allowing you to think it. And if He allows it then it can't be "bad". All He wants from us is happiness. If swordfighting would make you happy then I say go for it! Personally I've always wanted to know how heavy a sword is.

Being a single person (and a mother to a child with special needs no less) sometimes I have a bit more freedom to go on silly adventures every other weekend. Even risky ones too. Last summer I climbed a tree. At 36 years old! Last weekend I tried to snowboard. I failed miserable as I couldn't get up the hill on the dang pony life. At least I tried!
Big hugs to you! xo LauraJ
You just gotta do what you gotta do that makes you happy! Sometimes it is taking a risk and you worry about the consequences after, but you pray the whole damn time you're taking that risk!

8:08 AM  
Blogger Brightdreamer said...

So... is it really such a service to your family to be miserably cocooned? If Mom's unhappy, there's usually a trickle-down effect to the rest of the family. There's gotta be a middle ground, here - something between jet fighters and Jell-O cups. (Isn't sword fighting a form of exercise, anyway? Or how about basic martial arts?)

3:04 AM  
Blogger h. said...

Wanting to have some adrenaline in your life isn't a crime against your family. You just have to find an appropriate way of being fulfilled. Have you ever tried paintball? Or Brightdreamer's idea of martial arts? Why can't you learn sword fighting now? Honestly, a balanced, happy Momma leads to a happy, balanced family.

1:21 PM  
Anonymous IWOM said...

Speaking as a swordfighter (slightly out of practice, given that my last match was a good twenty years ago), I say start with fencing BEFORE you go shopping for bat'leths. It can help with your balance, coordination and -- as Coach J used to say -- 'playing chess with your whole body' will help with mental focus in other areas of your life. I know it helped me with my frustration over not being smart enough at our alma mater to major in anything else but art and the pressure from my parents to graduate and go run a Fortune 500 company (so long as we're on true confession time here). I've got a couple swords in your time zone that you can borrow, but you'd have to learn to fight leftie....

You are fighting the good fight -- raising your kids instead of farming them out to day orphanages, supporting your Better Half in his endeavors and working on your weight issues. You dinna need a sword because you are one. Slicing through the crap in life doesn't take metal, it just takes heart. I KNOW you have that.

7:49 AM  
Blogger Jade said...

You already know how I feel about sword fighting... move out here and we'll find a way to do it together. :)

I totally understand the adrenaline need - and the desire to make sure you aren't going too far out of the responsibility realm. I think there could be a middle ground to try for that would help fill that adrenaline desire without picking up a +3... I do think you would like paintball (and I'm kind of surprised I hadn't thought of that, it's incredibly fun - though slightly painful even if you wear the required layers of clothing)

When we talked about sword fighting before I kept picturing knights in shining armor kind of swords, but IWOM's comment now makes me think of fencing - like with wearing the full body gear and face mask things and using the long pointy things that are blunted on the end that can't actually cut off arms. I bet that would be more do-able than the medieval fighting we were talking about (at least to start with?)

12:42 AM  

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