I’ve come to realize that my world in the last several months has been a sort of protected secret. A restricted area where few were allowed passage. And I’ve had to ask myself why. I may be right or I may be wrong but I believe the following sheds some light – at least for me.
About a year ago something unthinkable happened – a friend almost died.
“Dear Friends” the email began – and those words, changed my life forever.
The day was beautiful – perfect- and as I sat at my computer in my sun-filled room I saw nothing but darkness. The flowers in the vase on my table died as I stared at them, unseeing – grasping for the ordinary – the normal – knowing I would never again have it back in my possession. Not really.
The azure sky and the aubergine mountains closed in on me and were like a noose squeezing the joy out of everything I held dear. My possessions, once the source of comfort and stability, became dangerous and threatened to hurt me because everything reminded me of the pain I felt of losing an irreplacable friend.
My blue walls became an ocean that drowned me as I fought for air for lungs already filled with tears. The guilt of my weakness and grief robbed the little oxygen I had left and I’ve not felt the easy action of breathing in and out since. I must tell myself to ‘breathe.’ Often, I don’t succeed. Because in that moment a door shut. No. Slammed. And something in me died – the death throes of that moment still rattle in distant brain cells that refuse to go quietly.
Moments, days, weeks, months have blurred one into the next. So much so that I couldn’t tell you what’s happened in my life, except in the most general terms, in the last year. I can say that I’ve felt like a woman submerged in a deprivation tank of perception and senses. Things once light became dark, things once clear became dull. No matter where I go, what I do or see, everything reminds me. How can that be? And yet it is.
Speaking of it and attempting to express it has only added nails to the coffin because it was my job to be strong. For her. For her children. For her family and friends. It was my job to fix this terrible mistake that life had perpetrated on us. My job to find the answers to why. Why? Why? Why? Why did this happen at all? Why did this happen to her?
No amount of comfort, sympathy or soul searching has answered that question, leaving me with the conclusion that we aren’t meant to know some things before their proper revelation. Which makes me wonder if the ‘truth’ is a wholly subjective animal that changes on a moment to moment basis rather than something carved in universal stone. A creature which will remain illusive as long as I chase after it. As long as I must find it.
But the truth cares not to show its face to anyone and rather prefers to taunt and torture all of us into submission and fetal positions of the soul. Running from it and the reality of what has happened has brought no relief either. Instead it brings more pain and confusion to my doorstep and camps there now like a squatter claiming real estate that belongs to another.
Yet also, I see that in this nightmare there have been miracles. True miracles. For which I am grateful beyond description. Her irrespressible spirit denied death its prize and she survived – and reclaims her life one small piece at a time. She is not satisfied – ever – and is relentless in her pursuit. But I see each small victory as a blessing and a gift from God or the angels or the universe. And pray for more every day.
And now I choose to focus on the miracles and maybe that is what God intended from the beginning?