much I know.
You were in my dream last night, healthy, waving from across the room. I reached out before you disappeared. After nine years, you still appear in inner night worlds. Not with wild passion or desperate longing, but with quiet comfort. Your smile says, “Everything will be all right.”
Everything once led to you. Especially when we were young, especially when life hurt, especially in your last years.
At twenty-one, I didn’t mind. I wanted to merge with my ideal lover, my ideal man, my most perfect friend. Although, of course, you weren’t perfect. Neither was I. In time, the ideal melted and we stood face-to-face with hurt feelings or anger or disappointment. Then the real work began. We didn’t flinch. We stayed.
All along, our paths traveled side-by-side, led to the same teachers, the same music, the same children, the same spiritual values, the same books and food and bed. Sometimes we grew apart, but not too far. My path led to you when I was wounded or bursting with pride, when I wanted to share love or loss. You knew the worst and best of me.
For four decades, we circled each other like our favorite retrievers. Looping, swooping free, and returning for reassurance and love.
In sickness, all paths led to you, just as when we first fell in love. I circled you. I cared for you. I devoted myself to helping you live as you would have done for me. I walked you to the edge, even when I couldn’t save you.
Then came the moment when you had to leave. We saw it coming. There was time to prepare, but who can plan for the vacuum within a flattened circle? Who can prepare for a forest fire that turns a world to ash?
When you were gone, I walked the trails we’d walked together, circled by our dog. Every walk, every path led to you and your forest cairn. Tears flowed in a river toward you, but I survived each hour and then each week and month. Just as I promised I would. At night, in dreams, the path still led to you.
Now, what feels like a lifetime later, despite sons and good friends, despite your nighttime visitations, I circle around my inner worlds, my words and thoughts, my solitude and silence. I circle around my Self, although you are never far. Safely nestled in my heart.
In dreams and memory, deep within my Feminine Soul, you live in my Imagination. I wonder if you’ll be waiting for me during my last faltering breath. “I’ll help you cross over . . . if I can,” you said not long before you died. “I hope I can help from the other side, the way you’ve helped me.” No matter what, I know you’ll be with me in Imagination.
Once again, everything will lead to you.
For eight years, I’ve taken a weekly writing class called Writing Through the Rough Spots with Ellen Schmidt. Last week, Ellen offered the spark at the beginning of this piece. The author Deborah Gregory is a beloved poet and social media friend. I highly recommend her book A Liberated Sheep in a Post Shepherd World and her blog. The first draft of this piece was my response the quote Ellen shared, although when I wrote the first draft, I didn’t quite get it was written by “my” Deborah Gregory. We’ll call it a lapse in my damaged hearing, but when I looked at my draft again, I understood and knew I had more to learn.
Just a few weeks ago, I asked Deborah to look at an article. It felt stuck, but I had an intuition that her poetic eye and Jungian perspective would see something I was missing. Her feedback helped me look at the article from a different angle. When a quote from her poem led me to write this piece, I knew sychronicity was at work. I needed to dig deeper into the idea. I share that exploration with you.
Have you had synchronistic experiences that drew you to deeper meaning? Most of us have. I’d love to hear about yours. For other posts about synchronicity, see A Love Note from Beyond or A Message from the Moon. Also take a moment to look at Deborah’s essays and poetry. You’ll be glad you did.