IT’S A LOT
Have you ever noticed how life can just cruise along with everything just clicking along. The occasional high. The occasional low. But mostly it just stays steady. And then seemingly out of the blue, as if you’ve hit turbulence in an airplane, its up and down and throwing you around in your seat and all you feel like you can do is hold on to the armrests and pray to get through it.
It just becomes a lot.
The last week has been a lot. Well, I suppose I could almost argue the last month has been a lot, but it really all just seemed to be amped on 10 this week.
In the last month, we had a truck break down, I flew to Texas and worked for my parent’s tax business, my parents and I all had the flu, my husband did a lot of bus driving, and we did a whole lot of big dreaming about the future.
This week didn’t start off great, though, with the news of Daryle Singletary passing. I was not personally close to him, but I’d met him a few times. I never eat at Rudy’s Barbecue without thinking of him after we’d had a conversation about them over social media a few years ago… and I will continue to think of him every time. But more he was a dear friend to many friends of mine, and when I woke up to the news my heart absolutely broke for all of them, for his wife and kids, his band and crew and country music in general. I had literally just talked about him a few days prior. (I actually have all his albums on shuffle on Spotify as I write this post.)
But on the flip side of that loss, I have three friends who welcomed babies into the world this week. Three precious, precious babies bringing joy and love and hope. I couldn’t be happier for all of them, and they’ve absolutely been a highlight of the week.
I also got to spend Valentine’s Day with my husband. We didn’t do anything extravagant (He did give me roses and a teddy bear, though, which will always make me melt.) but just being together was priceless to me. Especially after Daryle passing, I find myself treasuring every moment together more than usual. Sometimes you get a major reminder to appreciate what you have and to treasure it.
We got my husband’s truck out of the shop. It runs but its still having a few issues. At the exact same time, my truck is having issues. So despite all I do to make sure we have at least one good running vehicle, I sent my husband out on the road for the weekend and I am left with two vehicles I don’t 100% trust. On the bright side, we have already laid the ground work (read: appointment) to get them both fixed and back to good. The bad side is that I have two photoshoots this weekend, and I find myself on the verge of panic thinking about driving to them. The bright side, though, I remembered I pay for roadside assistance with my auto insurance. So it should be okay. Its just a stress that I didn’t need right now… or ever.
But on the bright side of that, I have two photoshoots this weekend, and three more next week. It’s been over a month since I had any shoots, so I’m super excited about getting back behind the camera.
Finally, though, the big elephant in the room… the school shooting in Florida. Here’s the sad part: I saw a tweet about it and my initial reaction was, “Oh another one,” and went about my business.
OH ANOTHER ONE. This should not be something anyone sees and just goes on about their day. And yet we live in a world where we do. I did! I was absolutely sick later as I finally sat down and learned all the details. But if there is anything that gives me hope is that I see people (okay so its all on Facebook, but go with me on this) discussing things more. It’s not just screaming at each other about gun ownership. It’s trying to get to the heart of the problem.
The day it happened, I found myself sitting in my husband’s truck watching the rain pour asking, “How did we get here?” People have owned guns for decades. Heck, my husband talks about how fellow students had gun racks in their vehicles WITH GUNS IN THEM in high school. No big deal. No one was going to go grab one of the guns and start killing people. We didn’t have these kinds of shootings.
Okay, that’s not true. There were shootings. But they didn’t happen regularly. You didn’t hear about it and go on with your day like it was completely normal news.
Do I think we need to look hard at gun regulations? I do. I don’t think the answer is taking everyone’s guns away, though. I think we need to look harder at not just mental health of people, but their emotional health. I think we need to look at our schools. Do we need more counselors? Do we need to have a smaller student to teacher ratio so kids don’t slip through the cracks? How do we take any stigma that still exists away from people seeking counseling on their own? How do we come to acknowledge that we’re all dealing with something? Can we learn how to spot problems and either do something about them ourselves or report them to authorities? Do we need to free up our law enforcement to do able to take action BEFORE a horrible crime is committed… and how do we do that without walking all over people’s rights?
I DON’T KNOW the answer to any of these things, but I feel like maybe we’re finally asking those questions. Hopefully we can get our government to start asking these questions as well. It’s a lot, but its also something we need to address. Because as we are going now, these things are going to keep happening and more innocent people are going to be killed. And we’re going to grow even more immune to it.
But at the end of all of this, I find myself sitting here drinking coffee, taking stock of everything, and on a whole I still feel peaceful. Oh I still feel an ache inside for all those families who have a big hole in them now. But I also smile at the photos of those precious new lives that came into this world this week. So at the end of the day, the good things in my life and in my heart outweigh the bad. I always say that I have to have a minor meltdown and then I can move on fine. I’ve had a few meltdowns this week, but they didn’t last. They let me get the negative emotions out, and I’m feeling ready to take on the world… or at least my little corner of it.