The Roar Sessions: Lindsey Mead

When Your Roar Sounds Different Than You Thought It Would
by Lindsey Mead

lindsey2I thought that a roar, by definition, sounded like a wild, feral lion.  I was raised by a mother and father who taught me I could be and do anything I wanted.  I headed down the road well traveled, into business and a Harvard MBA by the time I was 25.  Still, I wasn’t roaring.  I felt timid and quiet, if I’m being honest.  I got married and had two babies by the time I was 30.

I kept thinking I needed to start to roar.  But maybe, I told myself, I could focus on that after the next brass ring was in my hand.  It was my obligation, my destiny, right?  I was a feminist with a capital F, a child of Cambridge, Massachusetts.  My awareness of the investment the world – my parents, my teachers – had made in my education was so keen it sometimes threatened to suffocate me.  I would dent the universe.  I would roar.  I owed it to everyone who had believed in me.

It was my return to writing that allowed me to find my roar.  Though I had always written, and studied English in college, with a concentration on 20th century female poets, I took many years away from that world while I grew a family and a career in finance simultaneously.  It was only as I entered my 30s that I returned to the page, driven by some urge that was as unnamable as it was undeniable.  The only thing I know for sure, even now, is that the inchoate impulse that pushed me back to writing was inextricably linked to becoming a mother.

I wrote, and I started a blog, and the way I observed the world began to shift.  I began noticing things more.  And I slowly realized that my roar might be a whisper.  It sounds like silence in the morning while I meditate, like my breath in my ears as I run before dawn, like a child’s murmured “good night” as he climbs into bed, like the faint tap of the keyboard as I write down what I see.

As I grew more aware of my life through the process of writing about it, a well of gratitude opened up around me.  Sometimes my awareness of life’s beauty – and its pain – feels like an ocean yawning at my feet.  It can be disorienting to see and feel so much.   But what I also realized is that this chronicling of my experience is my way of roaring.  It isn’t loud and it doesn’t, maybe, shake the world in the way I expected to.  But it’s my way of looking up at the sky and howling my deep love for this world, for this planet, for my own life.  And that is a roar of its own kind.

It was only in retrospect that I realized when I first felt the pulse of my roar inside of me.  I was 20 weeks pregnant with my first baby.  At the end of a prenatal yoga class that I went to only once, the instructor asked us to lie back, close our eyes, and feel our baby’s energy inside of us.  I think I rolled my eyes behind my eyelids.  I was not, shall we say, feeling it.  But in the hushed room, surrounded by the domed bellies of other pregnant women, I heard an unmistakable voice in my head.  That voice said “grace.”  I did not know then that the baby growing inside of me was a girl, and I had never considered that her name might someday be Grace.   Grace turned 13 last month.

It took me a long time to realize that that voice was something deep inside of me, almost inaudible but absolutely insistent.  My roar is a murmur, and it speaks of grace and of gratitude.

**

Lindsey MeadLindsey Mead is a mother, writer, and financial services professional who lives outside of Boston.  She has been blogging regularly at A Design So Vast for 9 years, and her work has been published and anthologized in a variety of print and on-line sources.

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6 thoughts on “The Roar Sessions: Lindsey Mead

  1. dhenryb says:

    Lindsey—I was so glad that you shared the process of getting to your roar. That by just observing who you were and how you expressed yourself, by your writing, you found what your voice was. And there is, of course, so many ways for the roars in natures creatures to be expressed. Also motherhood is a wonderful way to begin discovering yourself—-it is such a startling, overwhelming, intense and, hopefully, wonderful way to find your fuller development. Creation itself. Well, thank you for sharing your path with us. Be well.
    Daniel

    Liked by 1 person

  2. universalgrit says:

    Not too surprisingly, I feel very much the same way– that my roar is a quiet force instead of a loud one. And this: “But it’s my way of looking up at the sky and howling my deep love for this world, for this planet, for my own life. And that is a roar of its own kind.” Oh yes. Beautiful. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

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