On the verge

It’s quiet in the house this morning. It’s Friday, and summer is in full swing. Unlike the ten previous summers, this year, I’m not working a full-time job, and I’m more aware of the daily rhythms of my family at rest. The days are long right now, and the weather has been beautiful. Lately, I’ve been sleeping with my window open, enjoying the slight breeze and the night noises from outside our bedroom. Mornings come early, with sunlight streaming in to touch my shoulder while I burrow into the comforter, enjoying the contrast of cool air and warm blankets while my mind fires up and prepares for the start of the day.

My husband and I are up an hour or more before the teenagers, who have taken to staying up later, and sleeping in. It is a pleasant start to the day. Hands wrapped around a mug of coffee, staring out the kitchen window at the antics of the cats in the yard, shaking off the last bit of sleepiness before the house wakes up around us.

This almost-year of small projects and soul searching has been an unexpected gift. I’ve contemplated and rejected all sorts of ideas about what I could and should be doing with my time, and simply let the needs of my family flow around me. I bought a ukulele, a deck of tarot cards and a couple of new lipsticks. I grew out my hair color and embraced the grey at my temples. I reconnected with old friends and became truly present in my own life.

This last year, life served up markers and milestones for our family at every turn. As we navigated deaths, birthdays, graduations and memorial services, my heart was open, my head was clear and my lungs full of air enough to power me through. Each morning I count my blessings, and each night I list my gratitude. I’m so lucky to have had this time to loosen the knots, to reflect and to just be. It’s tempting to stay in this holding pattern.

I also know the power and fulfillment of finding meaningful work. For a decade, I had the joy of working for a company whose mission brought me deep satisfaction, and where my talents were acknowledged, nurtured and rewarded. I told my husband a few months ago that I wanted to work for a company or a cause whose mission created that resonant, booming sense of rightness. I want my work to have a positive impact. I want to empower and ignite a community. I’ve been waiting for the lightning bolt of “YES!” to strike.

This morning, as my house wakes up around me, I feel as though I’m on the verge of something incredible for my future. I’m realizing that I’m ready for the next challenge. Setting my cap for an opportunity that fills me with passion and purpose is a risk. However, having had the breathing room and opportunity to explore my needs, my values and my goals, I know that I’m at my best when I’m enthusiastic and engaged. I’m ready to make a difference. I’m ready.