Monday, August 27, 2012

Sherbert Lemon*

Another day, some more pills.

Max, my corgi mix who has seizures, is resting peacefully in bed. I wish I could join him, but it's late, already 6 AM, and it's the day to mow the lawn. That might sound like a real bore, but I love the scent of mowed grass, and walking around under a cloudless sky. It's exhilarating. Especially since it hasn't been that long ago that I couldn't walk outside.

Max is now getting a walk every day. I had stopped for a while. His lean and lithe puppyhood has passed, and he is turning into a chunky dog. One of the best things my old therapist, Ted, did for me is hypnotize me. His only command? Walk every day. Only God knows what else he told me, but I am still alive, so I won't quibble on that part.

It didn't hurt that I had one of the most beautiful places on earth to walk. I went to Hollins University, and they have a stunning landscaper. With a little help from the gods, and some really neat paths, it was enough to entice me to walk.

Some days it was brilliant outside, and completely cloudless, and yet I felt as if I were walking in a tunnel. The edges of my vision would turn black, and all I could see was the tree or bush or whatever in front of me. The edges weren't so foglike after I got Eddie, my service animal.

I was so far gone that I even walked in darkness with him sometimes. For a woman, always a bad idea, no matter where you are. And particularly not when you are completely insane. I just didn't want anyone else to see me, I don't know why. Or talk to me, or pet my dog.

It ended up in daylight, and Eddie and I would pick up trash on the campus. There was a lot of it, that year. It was my own personal garden, and I felt satisfaction when I pulled up tires from the mud of Tinker Creek, or collected beer bottles on my way. I had an estate. Then the University hired someones to pick up for me and it was a bit less satisfying, but more beautiful.

There has been a lull in my walking since Eddie died two years ago and I am trying to pick up the pieces. Winter is coming on and walking in that season has it's own pleasures. The naked branches of the trees hold the stars in their hair. Flashes of red are cardinals, which no longer leave in the winter. The earth is less flashy, but more solid. And the colors! The slate at the bottom of Tinker Creek, against the brown of the grass and earth is more defined. And the moss stays green the year round. Even the small waterfall speaks louder and the air has the color of mist.

But now, there is still time for the lemony colors of fall, and the scent of a coffee house, and cake. 

*JK Rowling

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