Unleashed Joy

Like many others, we have long anticipated out first year of retirement. Dirty little secret—we got to do it at a ridiculously young age and feel like we have stolen the crown jewel. And, truly, we did. It just hasn’t felt like it the past few weeks.

If you don’t know why we are in South Padre Island, Texas, scroll back a few blog entries. For those of you who are loyal followers, (Hi Cathy, Zan Marie, Spesh, Nicole, Suzanne, Connie, Ro), you know that we are here with the best of nostalgic and romantic intentions. Well, we can sing all of the reminiscent Whorehouse lyrics we want, but it doesn’t soothe a snowbird’s desire to escape the cold.

I have done little writing this week. I have floundered beneath the weight of six degrees of rain and self-pity. I keep trying to rewrite the opening of Raven’s Path but it falls as flat as I feel. I look around our lovely South Padre home, the rain pelting, the windows rattling with each chilling blast, and it is frustrating to know that I would have accomplished more at home in minus twenty temperatures.

Yet, if I look for it, there is gold in the dullest of hills. We took the girls to the beach the other evening. Another gale was blowing and it was stinking cold. A lone couple passed us on the pristine 34-mile beach, their dog off the leash. After they passed we thought, why not? We unleashed the girls.

They romped and played. They chased seagulls and waves and challenged the relentless wind. For half an hour, they knew true, unadulterated freedom for the first time in their eight years on this planet. DH and I laughed with joy at their joy. 

When we let the girls go, they experienced a newfound sense of liberty in a fresh setting. We gave them an emotional “knowing” they have never experienced. When they cry or yip in their sleep, I pray it is because their dreams now have an exciting new context and that they feel time and again the joy of their first real unleash.

(As I post this, the sun is shining and the temperature rising. Perhaps a little good karma for seeing the silver lining?)


  1. Rose! Thanks for the shout out. And why wouldn't I be here to see what's going on? ;-) I love your honest description of the blues and the joy. Go, girls, Go! Teach your "momma" a bit about joy.

    1. Zan Marie,

      As always, thanks for dropping by. I know you are very busy these days. Yes, the girls teach me lessons daily. Thank goodness!

  2. Rose, even if you haven't done much writing this week, please know that I'm cheering for you all the way from across the pond =) The weather you describe (and it's not one iota better here) is just made to be a bit melancholic, and who knows, maybe you'll be able to use it in Raven's Path or its sequel or it is the inspiration for a brand-new story?
    But it's wonderful that you're able to see the silver lining on a cloudy horizon! =)

  3. Nicole,

    I am lucky to have cheerleaders like you. Sometimes, I need to remind myself that it is okay to slow down. After a lifetime of "doing" it is difficult. But, I plan on getting an "A" in retirement. :o) I hope your studies are going well and that your weather improves too.