My spirit keeps pushing me to walk. I seem to have to keep moving. Searching? I don’t know. I just have to keep walking, no matter what the body says. On my third walk, I watched a turtle sunbathing. I watched dandelions puffs fly through the air like snow and felt them tickling my face. I watched a single green leaf, caught in the breeze, turning and tumbling like a pirouette in the air. I thought of the words of a friend who wrote of her partner of nineteen years, slowly winding down, and the fight almost over. Her partner’s body is still there, but her sweet spirit, her laughter, and the glimmer in her eyes are gone. She thought herself prepared for when the time finally came, perhaps she is. She was not, however, prepared for the in-between time, when all is there and yet not.
And I heard myself whisper to Life, ‘Help me to forgive you.’ No, Life has done me no wrong. I have told Life what I want, what I think is important and sacred, by the choices I have made and make, by the actions I take, by what I do and don’t do, by the fears I cling to, the priorities I set and don’t set, by what I allow myself to be vulnerable to or remain closed. No, Life has done me no wrong. The oars are in my hands. Life is but the lake upon which I sail.
I do not know why I asked Life to help me forgive Her. Was it to simply acknowledge disappointment? Frustration? An acknowledgement that I had thought things would be different? A childish pout because I did not get my way? Hurt for not being prepared for whatever task awaits? An acknowledgement that I am human and “life” right now hurts, but maybe in forgiveness I can move on? Damn if I know. I know it was important. I know the quiet request, for a brief moment, released the body’s pain and for a brief moment, I could feel my breath and heartbeat. Another bookmark to return to when I am wise.
“Forgiveness is giving up all hope of having had a better past.” ― Anne Lamott
“Forgiveness is the answer to the child's dream of a miracle by which what is broken is made whole again, what is soiled is again made clean.” - Dag Hammarskjold
“You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.” – Mary Oliver