Listening for the Silence

I found myself, finally, standing in the late day sun, leaning against a rusty and fairly dirty guardrail, waiting for one of my soul sisters. She was in from California on a whirlwind two-day tour that included tending to her grieving mother, trying to purge literally anything from her childhood home in the hopes of clearing a bit of the physical and not-so-physical clutter, visiting with members of her ridiculously large extended family, and, of course, finding a bit of time to meet me for an all encompassing hug and some dinner.

The day had been another ride on my new crazy-train, whipping me around bends I didn’t expect, dropping me to plunging lows, barely avoiding impact, and shooting me to new heights I could not anticipate…all within the contract day. While the metaphor of an amusement park ride is cliche and trite, the current school year cannot be captured any other way. Like the park rides that I now avoid because, well, I’m old and I have read far too many newspaper stories about malfunctioning mechanical disasters(see? old! who reads a newspaper anymore??), the days are full of anticipation, excitement, laughter, fear, a bit of nausea, and complete and total unpredictability. And they are loud. The students are loud, the adults are loud, the words are loud, the faces are loud. Movement and momentum create a cacophony that has come to define my days.

But for just a few minutes, I stood, leaning against my guardrail, reaching for the warmth from the fading sun, and hearing the silence.

2 responses to “Listening for the Silence”

  1. I totally understand the amusement park metaphor. To make it even more fun, we can be whipped hither and yon by said roller coasters, but at least at the park we know what’s going to happen the next time we step on that ride. It’s like a brand-new roller coaster every. Darn. Day.

    And oh. That silence, as you felt it on the side of the road. So wonderful and so needed. Thank you for the time to breathe that you’ve given us all.


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