Up

by Jo

I’m afraid of heights that I cannot control, but power to living and not just existing…

I tripped over green and yellow magnetic tiles as I tied up the last loose ends of this move, hoping that her little fingers could handle cleaning up the remaining pieces I could not prioritize on her behalf. She started singing while freeing the floor of toy debris, so I began to hum while packing, believing that the humdrum of notes would carry me through the electric dust. It compounded and worked me to an incessant sneeze. She laughed because I became Snow White’s dwarf and in a bout of uncontrollable joy, tripped over herself while retrieving a tissue for me. I reckoned it helpful and thereafter, quickly washed my hands to avoid being more intimate with the very thing that separated me from going onward.
Then, it dawned on me that I was not jumping ship or abandoning what I orchestrated to be a life for us. I was being responsible–with her needs, my vision, and with His plan; Lord knows it’s easy to become the lost sheep when curiosity is misguided.

I dried my hands and flickered lingering droplets towards her face. Her hands fluttered like butterfly wings over her lashes in an attempt to block the water from landing. Her attempt failed not because she was incapable, but because she was still laughing and its haphazard rolling prevented her from focusing on avoiding the water. I secured the tissue around my nose, watching her cheeks plump like the yolk of the sun upon a horizon, and rolled my eyes like a schoolgirl playing the dozens.

She skipped her knock knee legs back to her toy chest as I grazed over the perimeter one final time. We were really leaving and the part of me that questioned the transition was the part of me I needed to leave too. So, I called her to the door while lifting my last box, retreating to the idea that I finally trusted more in my assignment than my comforts. She bolted to the door, unicorn bag in tow, “Mommy, why do people say women come from Jupiter?”

“Because they don’t know that we belong on Mars.”

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