image credit misselisabeth via Creative Commons on Flickr
Last weekend, for Mother's Day, I sat with Mama through a sleepless, emotionally-torturous, two-and-a-half day vigil as she held her baby, her twenty-year-old Siamese cat Sophie, in her arms. After a month-long ordeal of medical tests and surgery to remove a tumor from her stomach, a week in the hospital, another week at home recovering, my mother had to then put her beloved kitty to sleep on Monday, May 11.
For those of you who know -- deeply -- the very unique bond we have with our animal familiars, you can understand that losing a pet that's been the center of our family home for half my lifetime was actually relatively "worse" -- more emotionally painful -- than the string of challenging events we've been through in the past several weeks.
Mama kept referring to Sophie's passing as "one more hurdle." That metaphor wasn't working for me. A successfully cleared hurdle implies something that you never really came into contact with, that you skipped over, without being touched, that there was velocity involved... running, jumping... speed.
To me, it felt more like trying to run underwater. What others might call a hurdle is for me a part of the flow that's so slow it makes me more hyper-aware of motion than flying ever could.
This isn't about leaping and it's certainly not still.
It's a waiting with such great volume... It surrounds -- permeates, saturates -- everything.
I'm most comfortable with -- addicted to? -- motion, to action, even when it's all virtual and nothing but words. I don't normally like to try and write about things I'm still processing... It's ironic that when I'm living the most -- experiencing -- I'm least likely to be writing about it. But, I'm calling the waters back in with keystrokes, like a tide that's been out, re-establishing some momentum.
If I had a well-composed lesson to share, I'm sure it would have something to do with patience. (I'm painfully aware that it sounds like I'm about to spit when I say that word.) Maybe one day soon I'll have a sequel to the Art of Surrender.
If I had the necessary words to harvest, I'd tell you about the amazing, undeniably visible angels and spirits I've been wading through -- the living rooms of my childhood filmed with underwater cameras. Translucent ceilings, with Heaven right upstairs. Like someone threw glitter in the air. Like the clouds literally descended around my head and shoulders, or else all the prayers (yours and mine) managed to raise my world higher.