Some days what I most need is a little tenderness in my life - a little extra kindness - not because anything startling is wrong, but because nothing is quite right, either. Today was one of those days.
This time of year, as my mother's birthday approaches, followed quickly by the date of her death, I'm always a little off kilter, a little out of step, a little unsure of myself. There is nothing for anyone to say that will change it. It can't be "fixed." It just is. It can only be lived with.
But if I've been short with you, or out of sorts, or distant, or anything else that seems amiss, just know I'm struggling with my own demons this time of year. I crumble and I reassemble, and just like anything that's put back together I'm a little stronger every time.
When one is in this state of teetering on the edge, the simplest thing can push you one way or the other. I'm blessed that most of the time I'm incredibly happy. I go through my days knowing I lead a charmed existence, blessed by family and friends, with more good fortune than the average person has a right to. And I am grateful. Oh so very grateful for this state of grace, for I know how precarious it is. One small decision here or there could have created a different outcome.
Some people can look pain in the heart and some can only look away. I've done both. I understand both. I'm not asking you to look at it with me. If you can, that's fabulous. But I don't expect that of anyone. I'm just asking you to accept me while I look at it, as best I can, with the hope of diminishing it.
So, I beg from you a little extra kindness, understanding even if you don't, some gentle words, forgiveness, and - if you can spare it - a little tenderness.