Affirmed is a word we appellate lawyers don’t usually like, because it means the court is upholding the decision we were appealing them to change. Affirmed = boo, we lose.
But in the normal world, affirmation is a good thing, and I experienced a quiet affirmation this morning.
I woke early, without an alarm. I have been resisting using an alarm on normal days (if I have a hearing or something I absolutely cannot be late for, then I use one). In my prior stressed out life, the alarm was the worst thing in the world, sounding off a warning that my life was passing me by while I spent every day in dread. I know that sounds very dark. To be honest, it was a dark time.
But this morning I woke with the spring sun cresting the eastern hills, filling up my windows with promise. Lola let out a hefty dog sigh, and we rolled out of bed. After some sips of iced coffee, we headed out to see the goats. Everyone was well behaved, enjoying the morning feast of hay, little handfuls of goat grains, and fresh minerals. The hens waddled from the coop into the goat pen with minimal distraction, and after cleaning and refilling all the water buckets I grabbed two eggs from the nest boxes and headed back to the house.
It was around the time I was mixing up sugar syrup to take down to the bees that I recalled the dream I’d been having just before I woke up. I was back in the city, an even more grey and imposing version of San Francisco’s financial district where I used to work. I was in the middle of a job interview to be a staff attorney for the court, and I was doing a great job. Everyone was impressed with me, and afterwards, one of the interviewers came up to me and said “We think you’re perfect!” I felt chuffed by the compliments, but also confused about what I was doing there. Why had I applied for this job? Back out on the sidewalk, I started running into people I knew, who were all slightly strange. They were so glad to see me, and had a million questions and problems they said had been piling up that needed my attention. It made me feel appreciated, but hopeless, like stepping back into the hamster wheel I thought I’d escaped.
Whoa. I shuddered. Back to reality. I’m not on the hamster wheel. I’m walking out into the cool morning with my dog and my kitty trotting along beside me. There are the bees. There are the wildflowers. There is my garden. Water splashed on my toes as I dragged the hose to the tomatoes.
I am exactly where I should be. I am doing exactly what I should be doing.