August 5th was my 21st wedding anniversary. My son turns 21 in January. Do the math. Clearly, I didn’t pay attention in 6th grade health class. I was probably making a paper fortune teller. It turns out I wouldn’t marry Kirk Cameron. That lapse in judgement lead to a shotgun wedding and a trip to a recruiting station. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t sad yesterday. My heart was heavy. There aren’t enough fillers in the world to fix the bags under my eyes. The sorrow, in part, comes from mourning the loss of what I expected my life to be. You plan to marry a prince, buy a mansion and live happily ever after. You don’t anticipate starting over in your 40s and having the skin under your arm wave at a passerby faster then your hand.
I have to be honest, I didn’t plan on having kids. I was going to take over for Joan Lunden on Good Morning America. I took a detour when my life became an after-school special. It turned out to be the greatest blessing of my life. I was meant to be a mom. They bring me more joy than any job could. There is one thing in this life I am certain of – I am a devoted, badass mother. Besides loving and supporting my children – I have taken my kids on countless vacations, MLB games, NBA games, NFL games, broadway shows, etc. Remember when we could actually do those things? I wanted to make sure they had happy childhood memories. Now, they are older and too busy building digital worlds, recording videos doing viral dances for spies in China and watching people play PS4 games they own and could be playing themselves. So, I am going on few adventures on my own. I decided to take up kayaking. I went for the first time about a month ago. It was calming, almost completely serene. Almost. I was paddling down the Genesee River. It is green.
I went on another voyage last week. This time the water was a tad choppier. It required way more energy to paddle. So, I took a moment to catch my breath. That is when the kayak started drifting sideways toward the brush along the banks. I paddled faster than a politician when caught in a lie. It was too late.
I ducked and braced for impact – dropping the oar in the water! A branch got stuck in my hair as the kayak rocked back and forth. I managed to steady the kayak and get untangled. After I was done hyperventilating …. I laughed. A divorce, a pandemic and a Kayak accident – I hit the trifecta. Divorce is like kayaking. One day you are optimistic and calm. The next day there are rough waters and you don’t know if you will make it to shore. The only thing you can do is keep paddling.