Some part of me has been holding this moment in front of me for so long now -- Oh, let me get to posting, to seeing and connecting and coming away knowing more -- and now here it is, a quiet evening: everyone asleep, stone cold outside, the woodstove burning hickory and locust.
And I don't know what to say.
Perhaps it is the season approaching, but it seems a confession is in order: Sometimes I don't want to see, or connect, or know more. Because I might be right, and then how can I go on the way I've been going on? What kind of changes will I be asked to make? Will I recognize myself a year from now?
Or, just as likely, will my words betray me, reveal me to be oh-so-less-than-consistent? They are (I am?) true friends one minute, strangers the next day. Is it my hurry to blurt out what feels ever so true and true forever? It is a haste borne of excitement, to be sure, but also from wanting to have it be what I want. And then it is out and not quite right but what is there to do? I would so like to avoid such discomfort in the future by not.not.not doing it again, just please keeping quiet and having it all be fine. But what truth is there in that?
I feel like I've been trying to Keep a Handle on Things (those Things that make this life -- my marriage and relationships, my parenting, my inner world) for ever and always, and --
-- maybe it's time to let go.
What does that mean?
Here in the last little while, working on this embodiment of biology and biography, I have been prescribed pharmaceuticals (three now, and bloodwork in the lab). I have been counseled to complain more, to work outside, to listen to an archangel sing. I have been told my attraction to the Episcopal Church is irrelevant, and for that matter, so is attraction to gender. I have dreamed about whales, and hauntings, and complete and profound safety. I have been called a mystic for the second time in my life (I didn't listen the first time because it was my mom saying it [after this post, I think] and what do moms know?). I am closer than I think.
My college roommate -- a redheaded librarian poet who might have been more at home at Smith, one of us disaffected adolescents, head always cocked to listen with her one good ear and an amused half-smile -- is dying. In a hospital bed, in her den at home, her husband, daughter, and friends all around. I finally wrote to her, a card for her birthday (today), and realized as I did it that I hadn't yet because I didn't want to cry all those tears that were waiting just behind Dear Anne.
Tears for knowing about hospital beds and ice water and meds, about a collection of pictures set up in sight of her bed, about the encroaching fog and drifting away until There! Her spirit has left her body!
Tears for knowing that life goes on and will never be the same again as it was, except perhaps in dreams, when we sit beside her on the couch, or watch her in the kitchen, or walk past her in a hurry to see what's going on outside.
Tears for grace and gratitude and grief, for what was revealed when all else was stripped away, for touching that thin place and believing it makes a difference.
And that difference, that belief, that thin place where the Radiant Realm breaks through, somehow that brings perspective to the medicines, the counsels, the dreams, and the namings. There is still much to work with, no doubt about it, but work for a purpose is ofttimes easier to tackle.
Especially when there are Inbreakings of Holy Fun.
Life as a Treasure Hunt? Clues and maps, hints and pieces, codes and secrets.
Where are you taking me, O God? Let me follow -- safely, if you please.