Break Out

The Next Family

By: Tanya Ward Goodman

A few weeks ago, I was in a bit of a funk. I went to my neighborhood yoga studio, which is where I usually find a way to pull myself out of this kind of gooey blueness, but for some reason, yoga didn’t exactly work. At the end of class, I still felt tears trying to force themselves to the surface. Lucky for me, I ran into a friend.

“You look like a little sad bird,” she said.

I nodded, knowing that if I admitted to being sad, I would suddenly be sobbing.

“I know what you need,” she said.

She led me out to the parking lot to where her scooter sat like a trinket on the asphalt.

“You need to scoot.”

I started to protest, but then, I figured “why the heck not?” My friend plunked her helmet on my head, gave me a few quick instructions and then, I scooted. It was scary. I was worried that I’d scrape the creamy vanilla paint, that I’d fall and break an arm; I worried that I was disturbing the folks who were preparing for their next class. I worried about looking silly and then, you know what? I didn’t worry at all. I revved the engine (a little) and I scooted. My head felt bobble-big in the helmet, but it felt lighter, less full of junk.

I am prone to moments of stress and anxiety and even days of deep, indigo blue, but I am also adept at drawing good, wacky friends into my world. I am good at finding the kind of people who will demand that I “scoot!” I consider this a strange and lucky thing, like finding a diamond watch in my whole bran flakes. Friends like these have convinced me to play ping-pong and sing karaoke. They have taken me for rides on motorcycles and tractors and given me kites to fly. These friends have offered something random and strange, something to bounce me out of the little hollow I find myself stuck in from time to time.

I am grateful to have such generous spirits in my world.

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