On Tennessee time

2 Jul

A friend sent me a book in the mail a couple of months ago that I’ve been waiting for the right moment to crack. 12 hours after settling in on my Aunt Renee’s Tennessee farm, where life is slower and days are longer, I parted the pages of “29 Gifts” by Cami Walker and began to read. And cry. And read and cry some more. I cried in gratitude for the gifts that are here and easy to see. And those gifts that, maybe, take a bit more insight to recognize.

Rewind 48 hours to Tuesday morning. 5:15 alarm. Boys up and to the airport by 6:30. Through security by 7:30. Coffee and breakfast burritos done by 8. Arrive at the gate at 8:02. Gate closed, flight missed, dreams of smooth travel dashed. I can’t say exactly what it was that lifted all consciousness of time from our minds that morning. Maybe in spirit we had already arrived on the farm. Maybe we were meant to explore the wonders of LAX that day through the eyes of our boys and drink milkshakes at 9 am (yep, we did). Maybe that plane held moments that were not meant for us.

Whatever the reason, there is one thing I do know for certain. What is meant to be will be. That day I was meant to longingly watch our plane fly away without us. I was meant to sit on the carpet drawing crayon stick figures with the boys. Our noses were always meant to press up against the greenhouse of airport windows as precious bundles of luggage made their way onto plane after plane. I was always and forever meant to snuggle my little ones as we finally lifted off eight hours later than planned.

After a few begrudging hours, it was clear to see that all of these moments were, in fact, part of our greater adventure. Gifts, if you will, that had arrived unsolicited, but were received with gratitude in time.

Today I offer as my gift a reverie of thanks for those who have steered this farm adventure into the annals of family history. Because, really, this is one not to be forgotten; for reasons both sweet and sweeter.

I thank-you, Michelle, for giving me the gift of this book. Thank-you, Aunt Renee, for giving me peace and the farm, white linens and mason jars. Thank-you, my boys, for filling those jars with lightning bugs, and my heart with light every day. Thank-you, Kevin, for being the man that makes us all so safe, all the time. Thank-you ,Tennessee, for your patience and calm. And, thank-you, missed plane, for reminding me that bliss can be found in every step and misstep.

9 Responses to “On Tennessee time”

  1. stephanie brynstad July 3, 2011 at 7:51 am #

    oh anj, so beautiful! and so true about being exactly what it’s supposed to be. powerful powerful acceptance.

    • FreeTheMom March 1, 2013 at 7:59 am #

      Thank-you Steph. Much to learn 🙂

  2. Jen July 3, 2011 at 9:37 am #

    Oh how I love you.

  3. Kris July 6, 2011 at 10:10 am #

    Such beautiful insight! Thanks Anj… you have such a poetic way with words. I will take those words of wisdom to heart, and check out this book you spoke of! Enjoy your time in Tennessee and take in all the beauty and peace of creation. That is one of the only perks I can report of living in good ol’ PA! Free glances of baby deer, turkeys running wild and two crazy “residents”…aka groundhogs! Love you friend.

    • Anjale July 7, 2011 at 9:38 pm #

      Krissy! I hope you do pick up a copy of the book. It was wonderful! Right down your alley, my friend. Sending love.

  4. aliceks July 7, 2011 at 1:06 am #

    OMG, loved this. Made me sigh & nod in oh-yeah agreement. I tried to keep this in mind when I was waiting in the Carl’s Jr. parking lot on Century Blvd. for an hour to pick up my mom from LAX, all three kids in tow. Sometimes, when you run around like a loony, Life pushes PAUSE for you. 🙂 Thanks for your writing, Anj. Always wonderful.

    • Anjale July 7, 2011 at 9:39 pm #

      Kind of like your pictures do for me, my love 🙂


  1. Light a candle, save your sanity « Free the Mom - November 14, 2011

    […] lack of attention to personal space). A few years back my Aunt Renee, on a visit to LA from her farm in Tennessee, asked if I owned a candle from Diptyque. No, I did not. In an effort to resolve this apparent […]

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