There, not here

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If you are from where I am, you can use your left hand as a visual aid to point out where in the state you are now, where you are going, and where you’ve been. For example, right now I’m about where the thumb joins the main part of the hand. I recently traveled  to a region near the pinky finger. Around here you can say you are going “Up North” and those in the know will nod their heads in understanding. I went for the first time in two summers. How did I let so much time pass? I guess we were consumed with the anxiety of an adoption referral last summer, as well as squirrelling away money and resources for a trip to China and the arrival of baby girl. This recent trip was a short visit, only two nights and three days. But it was there, not here. There is where I was me. There meant sleeping in. Sipping coffee on the back porch overlooking deep woods sloping to a trickling stream. There was a place where no sippy cups were filled or spilled. Where books could be read at leisure on a sandy beach, music played late into the night and midnight walks were a possibility. There is a place that is not here.Here in zombieland: very little is spontaneous, and quality time comes early in the day, my schedule is not my own. I wish I could find a way to hang on to the tranquility I achieve there, stuff bits of it into my pocket to pull out when needed. So far, all I’ve found are lint balls and Cheerios.

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