The photographs are nice, but I have yet to see one that captures the essence of the place. It's as if you're walking into some type of sacred or hallowed ground, somewhere completely void of struggle. People I know, who have had the fortune of a visit and are attempting to describe it to those who have not, typically fumble through the aesthetics and finally end with, "You just have to see it. Witness it for yourself."
For this reason I am bowing, taking a type of curtsy, to the fear that I will be unable to do this place justice with my words. Thus, I am just going to go ahead and say what we know is coming, "You just have to see it. Witness it for yourself."
Rural Mississippi, to me, is a main street surrounded by back roads where a wave from the steering wheel is customary. Como is no exception. In fact, I think, it stands as a beloved representation of our fair state. This had to be at least part of the reason I chose to spend a week's vacation only seven miles south of my own home. Yet I think the main reason I went to Como that week had to do with my 40 days of 40.
"Huh, what's 40 days of 40?" you inquire.
"Thanks for asking," I say.
40 days of 40 was a period of time when I turned 40 years old and vowed to spend 40 days participating in all the things I truly loved in life. It was completely selfish, fantastic beyond words and lovingly supported by my family. I borrowed the idea from a brilliant friend and will forever be indebted to his sharing.
Here's where I need to interject a note from my heart saying I have and will always participate in the things I truly love. 40 days of 40 simply put a name to a particular period of time and seemed to make it okay for me to visit a place I loved on my own. Alone.
Five days, forty hours, of vacation time spent by a woman who doesn't exactly like to miss work 'cause she obviously thinks so much of herself she assumes the place will crumble without her. For this reason I spent the entire weekend before my vacation preparing for my absence and then explaining to my boss that he was to do nothing. Not touch anything. Can someone say fear of letting go? Yeah, I've been confronting that one for a while now.
My experience in the confrontation of fears has been that they are layers and once you begin peeling them back you immediately find yourself confronted with the next one. For me, after letting go came being alone. And, yes, I did put up one of those typical, last minute struggles that in the end left me claiming defeat in the alone category as well.
I finished work from the office computer I have installed in my home at 9am Monday morning. At 3pm I drove into Como, MS, parked on main street, walked up some steps, opened a large red door, looked to my right and grabbed a key that had been placed there for me. This was the beginning.
To be continued.....
Post Script to Josh ~ I know it's taking me a long time to get there but I think that's kinda the point. Love you.