I thought from time to time I could republish some work lingering in my portfolio. Here’s a piece from that collection. I hope you enjoy.
I’ve been playing at this for so long, I sometimes don’t know the sound of my own voice.
I’ve become the thing I think that I used to hate. The woman sandwiched so perfectly into life that you’d never think to pop her out of it, put her in brand new territory.
Have I gotten stale? Am I nothing more than a useless bag in the wind?
Nah, I’m just thirty-seven.
I had a conversation with a friend about leaving your phone’s flashlight on. I’ve done this several times, but the worst part is scrambling to find how to turn it off. And it’s like my brain just can’t remember that step, so there I am, illuminating my whole world. Or rather, blinding everyone in the eyes.
My daughter giggles at me, gives me an “Oh, Mom.” And I look around like, is she talking to me? When did this happen? When did I become a mother of twelve-going-on-thirteen-year-old? When did this phone become the Rosetta Stone that I’ve still not managed to crack?
The world would make me think it’s all over. I found the first gray hair a few days ago in the Pet Supplies Plus parking lot. It was wiry and at half mast, and I ripped it out of my head. “Don’t do that!” Matt said, and I would have been more suspicious of myself if I hadn’t. Who goes around with a broken TV attena jutting out of their crown and clawing at the sky?
All of these things remind me of the thing I knew I’d never become. Old. No longer easy on the eyes (Ericka had her day, friends). I’m a walking, talking hormonal mess who keeps dialating people’s pupils at the random, and I no longer have any balance. I turned my head the wrong way the other day in our shed and almost ended up sprawled over my daughter’s bike.
I’m the female version of Mr. Magoo, slightly less myopic and with enough sense to worry about these things. But then again, I don’t worry much.
The whole world will pass away. Did you know that? You’re sitting here but one day you won’t. I’m typing these things, but one day I won’t.
I see the beautiful injustice in it all, but if it were purely just, God wouldn’t let us breathe anymore in the first place.
Sinful hearts and all that.
So what do we do with this thing, you and me? What do we do with aching backs and cracking hips and the dust of ourselves wrinkling and wearing like an old coat that just doesn’t fit right anymore?
Well, the world would give a whole lesson on how not to be and look like you. But Jesus, well, He wants every dying second of it.
Because we die, we walk a little closer to Him. And as we live, we’re proof that He exists.
Because who else would want a bumbling thirty-seven-year-old who once was going to marry Prince William and now practically loses a finger each time she slices an orange?
He does. And I’ll never stop being grateful.
© 2023 by Ericka Clay
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