She wasn’t a screamer, nor a fighter. I suppose I get that from her. But I know that my mother got stressed. And somehow it had to get out.
I wasn’t yet of driving age. We had a blue Chevy Malibu station wagon. It wasn’t built for speed. Not known for its quick pickup. The light blue remained unblurred, but for those special moments when out of traffic’s way, safely buckled in, she would wink at me, slam her Herberger shoed right foot onto the gas pedal, roaring the engine! We could only squeal tightly along with the tires. We released our breath and she, her foot off the gas. “I just had to get the soot out,” she said. And we laughed. Louder than any engine’s roar.
It took awhile, but I would come to realize it wasn’t to release the “soot” from the car, but from our very spirits. Life can clog you down. And somehow, you have to release it. Laughter seemed to be our favorite route!
I can’t Malibu myself out of today’s stress. But I have found my own ways. On the gravel path. In shades of blue on the canvas. Sometimes, just word by word on the page, hoping they take you along for the ride, sometimes with a laugh, sometimes with a tear, sometimes both. The sun is coming up, hop in, my friends, let’s get the soot out!