If asked about the journey so far, yesterday I might have said it has been solitary.
Being the youngest of 5 children who somehow managed to be an “only child” for a good portion of her upbringing (because of age differences), left me a child in the midst of adults. Learning too much while too young. Hearing conversations that were too big…too mature…too everything because a room full of people were too caught up in the conversation to notice I was still sitting at the table. Being spoken to as a friend rather than a child. Leaving home young and being “on my own” for what feels like time eternal.
None of us has a truly solitary journey. Along the way, there were those who partnered with me in my hurt…elevated it…exacerbated it…relieved it…held it when I couldn’t. There were those who’s single goal in life seemed to be to steal from me…my innocence, my laughter, my joy, my pride, my independence. And for too long I’ve given them way too big a part in the story.
But the others…
The ones who walked in front of me to lead the way out of the dark. The ones who walked next to me holding my hand when times were joyful and when they were far from it. The ones who have walked behind me, propping me up when my back and knees were too weak to bear the load another step. And those who danced in circles around and around me, ensuring that my life was filled with music, laughter, blessing, and joy.
The others have not yet been given credit where credit is due.
As I sit contemplating a life filled with sisters, best friends, cousins, aunties, uncles, church grandparents, and lovers…I am reminded that life has not been solitary. Yes…this life is the one I have to take charge of and live. And yes…when the sand runs out, it will be me who closes my eyes to never open them again. But there are deep lines, marks, scars, tattoos, and deep deep etchings of the most royal color from each of the people that has touched my life.
This existence may be solitary…but the journey is filled with co-travelers. And I’m the better for the walk.