The sun filters itself down through the trees. I’m in too deep of thought to notice the outside on the inside. He gently takes my hand and helps me sit down among the soft green moss. His eyes penetrate through me and we talk. I’m not quite sure what we talk about; but we talk. Just as my anxiety melts, a chilling wind begins to blow and the sun hides itself. Slowly, and then all at once the rain begins. Droplets splatter and I lose myself. All I can think about is the pain. Fear grips at my heart and reality dies. I’m not sure exactly what happens, but it happens.
I can feel my weight shifting as my bare feet slip on the moss. I nearly lose my footing… but I keep running. My hair clings to my face in strands. I’m sobbing. Gut-wrenching body curls and tears simply stream down my cheeks. I can’t see anything, but I keep running. Suddenly, I feel something. Something warm. Something strong. His arms wrap around me and pull me close. I’m still sobbing, but I feel safer. The pain is still present, but the companionship helps. As my body writhes from sobs and unfathomable pain, he continues to hold me and whisper pretty things into my ear. After what seems like an eternity of despair, the sun finally wins and the rain ceases.
I’m breathing hard still, but he’s here. Gently touching my hair and supporting my limp body, I can feel the rhythm of his breathing. Eventually, I can sit up. His eyes penetrate me once more.
“It’s okay not to be okay,” he barely whispers. “I’m here… And when you’re not okay, I’ll be okay for you.”
I feel a soft smile tugging at my lips as we enjoy this moment together. I survived. We survived. It’s going to be okay.
Exhausted, I curl up in his lap and fall asleep like an infant. I feel safe.
I awake to the wind in the trees. Before I can so much as blink, it happens again. Torrents of rain drown out my screams of pain and pleas for mercy. I can’t even run. Instead, I plummet face forward, cover my ears, and begin to rock back and forth, sobbing once more.
I don’t even feel it as he lifts me into his embrace. I crumple into his arms and cry. Solid strength supports me and I can hear him whispering over and over again, “It’s okay to not be okay.” The rain finally stops again and he gently dries my tears.
“I know you’re not okay… but just hang tight to me.” His embrace is warm and his steadiness calms me. My hair begins to dry and the sun evaporates the water from my skin. We walk along together, hand in hand. The fresh air does me good.
But it happens again. I hear the wind and he pulls me close. He sets us down at the base of a tree and holds me tight. I expect excruciating pain, but what I feel is bearable. It still hurts, but I just focus on the words that are so tenderly whispered, “it’s okay to not be okay…”
Soon the sky clears and we rise. He offers his hand to me and we begin to dance. He’s still holding me close, but we dance. Oh, how we dance. The breeze toys with my hair and he toys with my heart.
It feels like a long time before the next storm hits. When it does, we cease our dancing and sit down. He pulls me close and I squeeze my eyes shut, just waiting for it to pass. And it does.
And we dance again.
Twirling through the woods, my heart feels free. My summer dress sways to the mood of the dance and we sway to and fro.
The rain starts and I don’t dive into his arms. I stand my ground with my face turned to heaven. The anxiety is still there, yes… But it’s okay to not be okay.
The sun always comes out and this time it appears brilliantly.
I find myself laughing as he pulls me into a hug. Our eyes meet and it happens. So gentle and pure, the kiss is pure radiance.
This time, I don’t even notice the rain… It feels normal. The droplets soak into my hair and skin. But I’m not crying… No, I’m laughing. He’s kissing me again. And then we dance. Oh, we dance. Slow, fast, happy, sad… We dance to the beat of our hearts. It’s okay to not be okay… Because after all, life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass… It’s about learning to dance in the rain.