Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Embracing What Remains

Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendor in the grass, of glory in the flower
We will grieve not, but rather find
Strength in what remains behind.  Williams Wordsworth

So much of this life is about loss.  I hate that.  I really do.  I am one of those holder-on'ers.  I am one of the last of the holder-on'ers.  I don't know when this started for me, I do know I was very young.

Maybe it was all the moving around we did, and so, I carried things with me from place to place.  Maybe this is how you think you deal with loss, surrounding yourself with things and papers and replaying the past in your head.  With all of this around you, you give the appearance that nothing has been lost.  Everything is right here.  See, it's all right here.  Even inside here she says pointing to her bald head.

It is not easy making the shift from holding on to things and people in an effort to convince yourself there has been no loss, to letting go and finding strength in what remains.  This is not easy for a holder-on'er like me.

I think I have said this cancer thing is a full time job.  All kinds of phone calls and appointments.  All kinds of papers to keep track of regarding your care and pathology reports and insurance and bills.  Today I had a fair amount of "business" to attend to, in order to attend to the cancer.

I did some positive things though.  Made an appointment with a plastic surgeon.  Signed up for some free classes for cancer patients.  Sat in the yard, watched an orange-chested bird bathe in my fountain, and a little hummingbird drinking from my fuchsia.

Life is fragile and amazing isn't it, like that little hummingbird today.

I have always been a holder-on'er, like a pit bull, and kickin like a donkey to keep from letting anything go.  Hee haw.  Baby got back, like a donkey.

It is not easy learning to loosen your grip, open your hands, and see your life there, fragile and amazing and realize you are not at the reins.  There are no reins.

Well damn, how do you hold on?

Maybe you don't.  Maybe you just throw your arms in the air and squeal with terror and joy.

Maybe you take your open hands and clasp them together and say a prayer.

Lord, help me let go and let you, then teach me how to embrace what remains.

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