Dear whoever animates all this beauty and pain,
I give my life to you.
Everything else is gone that I thought of as “me.” All the titles, the work, the merit badges, the hopes and dreams have no need for me.
So I am here on this beach staring at your sky and asking you to take what bits of flesh and bone remain and do something good with them. I have no idea what this means but everything else is gone. Maybe you can sort it out. I heard from someone you appreciate deliberate volunteers. So here I am. Do what you can with me, will you?
There are no definitions left. I have treasured them all–every title: wife, journalist, boss, employee, teacher and student. All gone. Mother is still a title. I’m not letting that one go despite the changes to it. Nor am I dropping grandmother titles. They are still true when nothing else is.
I have a resume with one word: love.
Can you do anything with such a slim list of skills and experience? You will or I’ll just stop. Die maybe. In some ways it doesn’t matter much to me how it comes out. I’m not in charge of that or anything much. Not anymore.
I tell people sometimes that I used to be someone with things and jobs and titles. They look bored. I understand.
But, I am not bored. I am free falling through space and time into more darkness than I can breathe through.
It’s not my first time.
I come here often. Yet this time I’m just giving up. Done. I’m not reinventing myself one more time. Take my hands and place something sweet beneath them. Take my words and let them be of comfort. Take my breath. Give it to someone who needs it. I don’t need anything anymore. I take comfort in giving it away.
This is a death. Not the kind where my heart stops beating. That would be easy.
This is a death of one life and going to another without knowing what that other is. This is when people comfort with cliche’s about things happening for a reason. Maybe they do. Maybe they don’t. Things happen. That’s what we know. Life goes on and on. That’s what we also know.
And in that going on I still just want to do some good, see some art, hear some music and touch the soft hair of a small child. I want to welcome the smiling dog and the rubbing cat.
I want to hold the hand of a crying woman and I want to tell that strong man that he is truly strong and I’m here to hold him up if he needs that.
So, whoever runs this whole thing: You haven’t wrecked me yet. I still want to be part of this whole life bit and I don’t care how hard you make it for me. (although I’m not asking for a special test where you have me barefoot on a sidewalk hoping for mercy but if you do, someone like my former self will pull up and offer me coffee because yes, that still happens.)
Dear whoever animates all this, I want to thank you for long hiking trails and especially for pollinators who still make me sigh with pure delight. Thank you for the look of those people who call me mom with their dreamy green and blue eyes and long fingers. Thanks also for those grandchildren–sorry I’m stating the obvious. I bet you get sick of all the pleading, begging and gratitude for obvious blessings.
So here’s this: thank you for throwing me off so many bridges that I’m good at falling. Thanks also for taking every shred of pride I had because I don’t need it where I’m going. Thank you for the great darkness because it doesn’t scare me anymore.
Mostly, thank you for animating the worm and the ocean, the galaxies and the burp of a tiny baby. I’m guessing they all took the same amount of work and you may enjoy them equally what with that whole Buddha deal you’ve got going.
I don’t expect to hear back from you. Just, if you can, take this bit of soul and song and make something of it. I’ve got time.
Girl without a name