well so after two days of cleaning house – cleaning out closets, putting stuff away, getting rid of plastic storage containers with no lids and vice versa – and two bags of stuff for goodwill later, i had finally (sorta) made peace with the empty. it came after a fit of sobbing while vacuuming the carpet in my daughter’s empty room. finally i just stood there in the middle of her floor and i said to myself, “well, ok…we’re just going to be empty for a while.”
i stopped fighting the emptyness. and instead, i leaned into it.
i know…don’t get me started…it seems so counterintuitive to lean into something that hurts or has the potential to hurt. but it’s kind of like that thing where cyclists lean into the curve. makes no sense at all, and yet i can vividly remember riding behind my dad on his motorcycle and experiencing this phenomenon first hand.
because i am a total science geek, i recently decided to look a little deeper into this marvel of physics. and without boring you completely to death, the basic principle behind leaning into curves is to keep balance. yes, duh…thank you captain obvious.
but it’s not just that. i mean it is that, but here’s the thing that really spoke to me. to lean into a curve implies two significant details:
- acceleration…motion. moving forward
- change in direction.
leaning into the curve balances the cyclists while he/she is moving forward in a change of direction. and so this simple physics lesson proved to be the thing to help me move forward in my change of direction.
of course I say ‘simple’…it’s really not when you consider the many factors and forces to have to be accounted for in the complex equations for calculating the correct angle of lean. that’s why it is helpful to have someone who is experienced in navigating the twists and turns of life. someone who knows just how far to lean and how fast to go to make it through the turn.
which is exactly what my dad is for me. and i have been so blessed to have him in my life for his steadfastness and his quiet confidence on the road of life. but mostly for letting me lean on him.
from the archives