Tuesday, April 19, 2011

An Anchor

Making a major change in one’s life usually involves taking up anchor and aimlessly floating around until you find your next stop or set a new course towards a new destination. I was always the drifter. Rooted to nothing and clinging to every passing thing that surfed on by in hopes of finding home base. These temporary life rafts included men, jobs, school, friends, pets, trips, movies, books, music, hobbies, physical goals…you name it.

Since I took a leave from my job almost exactly a year ago, I have felt like a girl without an anchor again. At least as far as ‘purpose’ and ‘direction’ goes. When you belong to a group of people who are jostling their way through the same career, it is easy to know where you are headed, where you have come from and where you are now. Cut that cord and the reference points are gone.

Home I came to find a farm with just as much to do as ever before (though now I actually had the time to do it properly without work clothes on and babies riding my hips in the evenings). There were children that sought their mother out for all things related to logistics and no things related to comfort, support, play and love. I was their Director at best as that was all I had time to do.

I had ideas of things I wanted to write, things that needed organization, new things to build but none of these represented an anchor for me. Financially I was reluctantly now dependant solely on my husband’s anchor. I would be the one taking money out of the account, never putting money in. There was something so oddly satisfying about getting a pay cheque every two weeks with my name on it. So few characters on a cheque with so much significance but eventually it came at too great a cost to my family and my sanity

Somewhere out there is another shore where I will take refuge and plant my flag again. I honestly can’t say where it is. Will it be here on the farm? Will it have to do with my community? My church? My children? All of the above?

When I was younger I used to leap so mindlessly into the water never caring where I would end up next. Somehow now the islands seem so far away, everything I am doing is so weightless without the structure I once knew. I look around and see everything beautiful that I have ever wanted in my life. Yet this ship has no name. And its freaking me out.

This time I don’t want to spend my energy shoving square pegs into round holes.
This time I will not cling to the first thing that floats on by no matter how enticing a distraction it is. Oh, do I know what a luxury I have in this choice? I bow to the strength in the women I know who have no choice but to continue to work, they keep their nose to the grindstone and don’t look down, up or ahead so as to not get overwhelmed. I’m a fortunate boat, this I do realize.

Now I am waiting for my new anchor to find me. Let the tides make the effort to get to me for once. I can be a patient girl, I can. But can you please show your face soon because I’m getting tired of treading water and waiting for the unknown?

Just what exactly am I meant to be doing here?


  1. maybe just breathe, in my experience the tide sweeps us out all too soon to face a new and challenging wave. Never forget too that you are your peoples' anchor!

  2. Great introspective thoughts wife. Jen's words are so true I think. As surely as the sun rises the incoming tide will bring waves both small and great that will challenge and strengthen you and make you glad you cast your anchor in the present and precious life you've chosen.

  3. so true! I was always the girl that swam upstream or climbed uphill on purpose - I'm trying to let go of the unnecessary self-made challenges so I have energy to deal with the real ones. I shall breathe a while longer.

  4. I was at home full time with my four biological children for close to 14 years.I was often at a loss as to say " what I did" when asked. I often would say I was a nurse( which was true, professionally although I wasn't working as such at the time).It took me some time to settle in to see what value I had as a mom.
    I wouldn't trade those years back now for anything on this earth. In fact I wish I had been able to stay longer


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