Carousels. I enjoy watching them, and the opportunities to do so abound this time of year. Each one is unique and ornate; I think it’s so fun to watch a child get excited about the particular animal or horse they want. There’s something about a specific one that speaks to each person differently. Then, once everyone’s settled and the ride starts, it picks up speed and it becomes harder and harder to make out each individual outline and they begin to run together until the whole carousel is just a blur of swirling colors and breathless laughter. This year, watching such a simple thing evoked such strong imagery for me. Choices made, ups and downs, always spinning, not unlike our lives.
I suppose I also like the carousel because it seems secure. No chance of a car hurtling towards the ground in a 50 foot fall. Unlikely that you’ll get puked on by the person next to you. Our lives, as of a month ago, were safe, just the way I like them. We came home, we watched our shows, we ate what we wanted, did what we wanted, essentially only had ourselves to think about. P changed all that. My world changed quickly from carousel to roller coaster. Sometimes when we make choices in life and commit to them, later we can’t remember choosing them at all. The safe gray horse changes before your eyes into a 2-seater on a track, and you don’t know how you got there.
I know that my head knew that love wouldn’t be enough for P. I believe that my heart may even have believed it too. But somewhere, locked deep inside, was just enough arrogance to believe that maybe, just maybe, it could be. Arrogance plus ignorance is a very dangerous combination. I said before we were in over our heads, and we were. I said that we were learning, and we did. What I didn’t say was that this was the hardest thing we’ve EVER taken on, and that includes our miscarriages. I didn’t say that the more we loved, the more he pushed us away. And I didn’t say that my hair was starting to fall out and my heart would pound from stress anytime he walked into a room. Even with that, we were committed, even when the car started hurtling towards the ground. Love does crazy things.
In a perfect world, love would have been enough. In a perfect world, P would be in his room asleep right now, dreaming of the horses. And in a perfect world, people like us wouldn’t be needed at all. Choices would be as easy as picking your favorite steed and life’s ups and downs would be as smooth and seamless as a carousel ride. I pray that for P, one day his will be.