Gratitude despite dishevelment and poopedness

Gratitude 32/40

I am about to take a shower when I see the text on our chicken-chat: “I think one of our chickens has died and I need some help.” This is not how I imagined New Year’s Eve would begin.

We don’t know what she died of. Hendini was one of the younger ones. And one of the bullies. She was also a cunning escape artist. She would seek the chance to jump the fence and dash down the hillside while we ran after her, hunched over and worried about poison ivy.

Like Hendini, I too love to run. For most of my life I’ve been a stray chicken, often in my own company, often wanting more space in the company of others.

Over the recent frigid spell, the chickens stayed inside the coop for several days. Cooped up, I suppose. Maybe something went wrong then.

When I started to date my partner, I felt afraid of losing my freedom. This weekend was the first time in my life where I celebrated the holidays in the role of a “mom.” I loved being in this family, and I missed my days of entering the new year at a silent retreat. This is also the first time in my life where I can’t quite depend on my body.

When I woke up on the first of January I felt feral, like I too wanted to jump the fence. On the second of January I felt stranded by my lack of energy. On the third of January I felt worried about making a living with this life. Part of me feels disappointed with how disheveled I’m entering the new year. My energy is so low, my expectations scrambled, my house still partly unpacked.

And another part of me is rolling her eyes at me saying, “Girl, whatever! You too could be gone like Hendini—turning into a clay jug with feathers and stiff feet. No matter how disheveled you start the new year, you are here. Your lung sacks are functioning beautifully, exchanging Co2 for oxygen among other minor miracles. You be you. I love you in sickness and in health, productivity and poopedness”