By Laura Mills
The Beatles recorded a song called “The Long and Winding Road,” which I admit—even as one of my generation’s most enthusiastic Beatles fans—I usually skip when it rolls around on an album or collection. To be fair, the song is a stylistic masterpiece; much like the long and winding road they describe, the melody and lyrics curve back and forth, up and down, meandering from beginning to end. Style points aside, though, the plodding tempo makes me downright antsy after just a few moments.
Ironically, when I’ve attempted to meditate lately the image of a long and winding road has come to mind. Stretching infinitely ahead, curving into the distance, my heart tells me it’s my road. This image doesn’t surprise me, really, this being May… it’s the month in which I encounter my most notable life “landmarks.” Last week, for example, was the one-year anniversary of the day I first met my daughter. My second Mother’s Day was this past Sunday. My birthday occurs in May, as does my wedding anniversary. This month more than any other, I can’t help but feel a profound sense of time passing and of change. I also feel gratitude for the distance already traveled, as well as anxiety about the unexplored terrain ahead.
I know the experience of a long and winding road, quite literally, as many times in the middle of a long walk or hike I’ve looked into a distance that both invited and frightened me. This translates so well into a metaphor for life, which leads me back to that Beatles song…which perhaps at some level, like the month of May, reminds me that plodding or no I am always on the move. It’s not always easy, and it’s not always pretty, but one foot in front of the other, my calling is to make every footfall count.