Saturday, January 17, 2015

it smells like everything but smoke.

{via Unsplash}
2015 showed up without warning. One minute, it was the year of precipice -- the year of death and life, the year my book was born, the year my marriage passed the five year mark, the year our daughter turned two, the year we found out that we were adding a fourth member to our family.

The year that turned me inside out and rubbed salt on my skin.

And then I blinked. And 2015 arrived.

My year of burning. 

Every year, I pick a word. Or rather, the word picks me. It finds me in the snow, in the dark, between the clinking of dirty dishes and the noise that my vacuum makes when it sucks up a sock by mistake. It slips into my soul the way water slides around stones. It doesn't move them, it just makes itself at home in the spaces.

And this year of burning // it's already started. It started when I dared to speak the release date for the second book to my writing coach, and she smiled through Facebook chat and said,  HOLLA. Just like that, all in caps. From anyone else, it would have made me smile and I would have moved on. From her? It's a tattoo on my heart-walls.

Holla. You got this. You do this.

It started when our entire plan for birthing this second child was turned on its ear by a cowardly stranger, leaving me scrambling for plans B, C, and D...and maybe even E. It all went down between rushed footsteps to the bathroom and a smell-sensitive husband standing outside the bathroom door with a water bottle and a hairband and a soft apology. It happened in my weakest moments, leaving me feeling even weaker in the process.

2015, you're already burning shit away. And I mean that literally figuratively. All the crap, all the stuff that I came into this year carrying? It's burning away. And it stinks and it's making me gag and feel weak and empty in the moment. But then I feel lighter, better, when I walk away.

It's the kind of year where I stop apologizing for making metaphors out of morning-afternoon-evening-all-the-time sickness. It's the kind of year where I acknowledge mistakes and dig my hands in deeper until the mud creeps up to my elbows, the kind that smells fresh and earthy and full of growth potential.

I can't help but wrap my entire body around the story of the three men in the fire that turned into four, because Glory was made perfect in flames and they were never alone. And they came out without even the smell of smoke on them, because they were wrapped up in Lion's breath -- flame retardant from He who would eventually fight a path through hell all for my soul.

Burning is beautiful. Burning is deadly. I'm okay with both.

So basically, this is where I leave you. Or begin with you. I'm not entirely sure which is more appropriate, but both apply ::

2015 is a year of burning. Of birth. Of rings of fire, physical and mental and spiritual. I can anticipate the raw that will be in this place. Less censored, more jagged.

Less talking, more words.

And a hell of a lot more burning.


  1. my desire is always to be in fire when it comes to sharing God's work in my life:)

  2. All I can think of is "ring of fire." Yeah VBAC! :)

  3. Welcome, burning year! Let it burn away everything that's not meant to be part of your life and leave the rest rejuvenated, like a prairie burn:

  4. I've always appreciated your boldness as a blogger, Rachel, even if I've not commented that much. So today I awarded you on my blog! God bless! <3


I look at you and see all the ways a soul can bruise, and I wish I could sink my hands into your flesh and light lanterns along your spine so you know there's nothing but light when I see you. :: Shinji Moon