As I walked the dog, a steady, gentle rain was falling. The night was warm, and the rain felt good as it fell on my hair and skin. For once, the dog didn’t run back in, and we walked for a while. As Baik investigated the area, I stood there, and had no desire for shelter. I walked in the rain until my hair hung in soggy curls, and my damp t-shirt dress began to cling to me. I could feel the rain running down my bare arms and legs.
For the first time in a long time I felt calm; refreshed; even cleansed. Maybe it’s because I know a chapter is closing, and a new one is about to begin. The transition period may not be easy, but I am ready. I think I’ve been ready for a long, long time. There is no regret, or guilt, or pain. Instead, I am flooded with relief.
I also feel excitement. For the first time in years I have no idea what lies ahead. The future is full of possibilities. Rather than an endless stretch of sameness with no hope of change, I see dozens of paths stretching out in all directions. It’s frightening and exhilarating all at once. Instead of focusing on what I’ve lost, or seeing this as a failure, I am choosing to look at it as an adventure. I’m not going to waste my time worrying about where I’ve been. I am focusing on what I have gained—mainly myself—and where I can now go.
For the first time in longer than I can remember, I am free to be myself. I am no longer trapped. I can love and be loved. My heart is awake and alive, and whole again…washed clean in the rain.