I get my tendency to organize by pile and be surrounded in my office by paper from my father. I save things. This weekend, my mother is coming over to guide me through the basement toward scrapping, saving and organizing.

On my desk are pictures of Oregon, my freedom trail trip last June. I reference it often, I know, but that’s because it was so significant. Do you know how many accomplished, confident thirty- and fortysomethings tell me, “Wow, you went on a trip by yourself, just for pleasure?” Yes. Just me, just the silence of my own hotel room, just to watch the sun rise over the vineyards with a steaming cup of coffee in my hands and no fear of the silence.

Fear of the unknown is the scariest thing. For four months before my divorce was final, my eldest son was paralyzed by the what-ifs of what lay ahead. When his father moved out finally, he realized life wouldn’t be torn apart – just different.

I am writing an article about how parents can foster relationships between siblings. My sister and I used to fight like cats; even in my 20s, she was the only person who could reduce me to tears.

But she has known me in ways that no one else has and for longer than almost anyone. These days, I send her text messages saying I love her. Exclamation points pass between us.

It is still dark. The mornings in Michigan are forever black. I could climb a mountain at 5 a.m., if only I could see it.

What will today hold? An intense check-off-my-list client meeting, phone interviews, a client event, a power-walk down the freedom path with my oldest friend.

There will be silence tonight and peace in the dawn tomorrow. The eagles are soaring. They crest below the clouds and wave as they pass, casting shadows on the day. 

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