This Is A Hallowed Space.

This Is Hallowed Space. | Leia Bryn

As we pull onto the gravel road I know we've almost arrived. I can see the logs of the cabin peeking between the pines, hear the voices of family laughing on the three season porch, and if it's past 9:00am, the roaring of the boat engine. We're greeted with hugs and how are you's, hands abundant to unload the jeep. 

The bunkhouse smells of pine needles and summers mustiness. Suits are already hanging to dry on the line outside. As is custom at the lake cabin we strip away our made up faces, throw on our suits and sweats, and toss long hair into braids or ponies.

 This is a hallowed space. 

I make my way onto the dock, joining three generations of women who've sat in these exact adirondacks for years upon years. The men take to the boat - looking for adventure and epic flips, tricks, and falls. There we sit, women spanning 25 to 80. There's more life lived in the women I look upon than I yet can fathom. Marriages, babies, toddlers, new jobs, hard times, good times, teenagers, empty nesters, returns to work, retirements, travels, broken hearts, and death. 

This is a hallowed space.

There's not a hint of makeup on these women before me. Their faces reveal lives lived fully. Wrinkles tell stories of motherhood gone by too fast. Dark circles concede to years of sleepless nights and early mornings rocking babies, calming nightmares of their elementary child, and nodding to policeman as they bring their teenagers home from late night parties. Their smiles declare it was all worth it. Their laughter acknowledges they wouldn't change even a single moment.

This is a hallowed space.

So there I sit, knees clutched to my chest, looking on these radiantly beautiful women whose faces free from makeup tell 80-years of stories. This is how I imagine it was meant to be. Where keeping up with the Jones' has no place. Where all we have to offer is ourselves and nothing more or less. There, as we sit in a grubby clothes and faces that are showing every line, wrinkle and dark spot, we enter into hallowed space.