94 minutes…

94 minutes… A mere hour and a half, plus 4. Sounds like such an inconsequential drop in the bucket of your lifetime of time… but sometimes, 94 minutes can change your life…

A quick KIK some nights ago, a few more hurriedly sent from the medical center in Germany… awaiting inoculations, and PERSU, trying to straighten out the hazardous duty pay from the last deployment, even while awaiting orders and being on deck for the coming week…

At last, that elusive and much anticipated of contacts… an email ! Small blue letters dancing toward the server, formatted and marching in one long line, patiently awaiting their turn in the queue, sneaking into one port and out another, to be pushed ahead, straight into my account… snick and zoom, mere moments for all this to occur. I get a PING, and I saunter unaware to the iPad… and it is HIM !! The Soldier, of course !!!!! =) Fireworks of happiness explode around my head, the tears start instantly, the laughter as I call his name, all from this small piece of technology that we take for granted every day. Email. That instant-gratification mode of communication that is available world-wide practically. Most of us don’t realize how spotty service is in a war zone…

Tonight, the ultimate prize, worth waiting a thousand lifetimes for… good thing too, since that is how long it feels in Tish-time… that gold-medal prize… A PHONE CALL; stateside no less !!!!!!! YAY ! =) 94 minutes of bliss… sounds so short, but again, in that world-between-worlds where we exist, it can be a lifetime. The first 3 were spent taking of the upcoming departure, and yet another holiday spent apart. “It’s all good”, he tells me with a wry grin in his voice… “we’d probably die from the shock of being together anyway!” The next 5 were logistics, health related and family business. The remaining minutes were all mine. =) He would lead with something small, and ask specific questions, and let me talk. I mean, really, actually and for true, have a conversation ! Any military spouses reading this will understand the hoopla in my words here… !! =) Plans for his return and my trip, foods we want to cook for each other, sake in Japan, bourbon in Provincetown, music. Laughter, sighs, questions, answers. Pure happiness and light. “Nina darlin,’ I gotta go now baby. But I can’t tell you how happy you are making me here”… why ? “Because this is as content as I can be without holding you, and that is something. That’s something big.”

My heart is racing… again, my hands tremble and I pace. But this time, there is a purpose behind the movements. A sense of calm beneath the storm of emotion… I am reminded of a Chinese proverb:

“when sleeping women wake, mountains move”… =)

I am willing, I am determined, I am passionate, I am awake. This mountain, impossibly insurmountable only weeks ago now begins to crumble at the edges. Not a lot, just a fraction of a breadth… but enough for my toes to gain purchase, and for me to grab rough handfuls and begin the arduous ascent. What seemed an impossibility now perhaps can, with a flick of the kaleidoscope, become something to train for, to run toward.

Will we arrive at the finish line, sweaty and bruised ? I cannot say. But no longer is the task too much for me. I have said it before, I have TRIED to live it, become it, embody it. But now, I find myself again at a precipice. Gazing down into the clouds as wind whips my hair across my neck and I start to tremble. Not in fear, but that excitement that was dormant for years, now embracing me daily, for the past months. A slow, wide grin spreads across my face, and I am in the position again to take my own advice. I throw back my head, howl a womanly roar, grab my ass and fling myself off the cliff…

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