“Once I stood back and took in the longer sweep of time and season and scene, I could see that this was clearly not the whole story. It seemed that the data were revealing a story of bounty”.Suzanne Simard, Finding the Mother Tree
Some wrongs cannot be righted. Nor can they be reconciled or understood.
But for those injuries with a shot at healing, a longer sweep of time and season and scene might offer a grace, as yet concealed.
We forgo the impulse to reach too quickly for forgiveness — instead, bringing light to our little gremlins, still hiding out in dark rooms and behind corners.
Those ‘niggling details’ you hadn’t been willing, or able, to grok.
Afterall, how does one come to terms with the unthinkable?
That they knew she was dying, and deliberately imposed the irrevocable.
That they stripped away your one, final chance to connect with her on this earth plane. To tell her you adored her. And to whisper goodbye.
Your sister, whom you’d loved for over a decade in silence. At a distance.
You open your eyes and you really look.
You see that it was not up to them to step into a role that would manipulate your fate. Nullify your agency. Inflict a choice that should have been yours.
You are drowning in regret at the tiny opening, now lost.
Yet you recognize that what happened was your fate. As it was hers, too, to relinquish your last affection.
They’d broken the news in an email, a couple of weeks after her passing.
Signing it with “love”, as they had, did nothing to soften the betrayal — but merely, inflamed your anguish with hypocrisy.
Their tone was matter of fact. Without sentiment, like a newspaper account. Or electronic notice from HR announcing you were about to be fired.
Had nobody thought to pick up the phone? To cushion the blow? Offer consolation or a bit of care?
The light drained out of your eyes, immediately upon impact as the news hit. Your body turned grey. Shocked, stunned to the core.
And you wanted to hate them for it. To make this the last straw in your long-tenuous relationship.
They’d committed a nastiness, unforgivable to anyone with an ounce of feeling.
Leaving their lives forever pressed into view as a viable option. To surrender, at last, the grip they still had on you.
Your aching mind, rattled and shook for days.
Until the tussle quieted.
You arose on a Saturday morning with the full moon in your eyes.*
Hand-wrote the message that had awakened in your heart. Before brushing your teeth or combing your hair, as quickly as the words fell in.
It was a message of love. And unspoken, but inherent forgiveness.
Words flowed seamlessly onto the page – which you pasted into a return email with no revisions.
Your tone was simple. You asked how they were feeling. And told them how sorry and sad you were.
That you loved them, were ‘there’ for them with affection and a listening ear, should they ever wish to reach out.
You hit the send button.
It was at this moment, that the bounty arrived.
Perfect peace, tender mercy.
Enduring love, pulsing through your devastated heart.
“Grief is a strange journey. For we do not only lose another person; we lose the person we were, along with the one we lost.”Patricia Monaghan
“This is between me and God.”Matt Kahn