Today I am a small fawn. I need to be tender with her.
I’ve been sicker than a dog most of the week. Bad cold or strep-like stuff. It was an emotional trip. There was comfort and there was difficulty. I am glad I went. And now (I think) I’m ready to be back. I miss my dogs, the horses, my bed and my cat. I miss my studio. Somewhat recently, I arrived at an inner landscape that I can neither avoid nor travel away from, no matter where I go. I seem to have been dropped off in the middle of nowhere. A vast place. Like a desert, but without the tell-tale and dependable signs of weather that give one understanding or sense of place. Sand or snow, it’s all the same right now. My newest home has revealed itself to be the great expanse of all the tomorrows stretching out before me…and it is such a bewildering place to be. I’m left with no alternative other than to simply let it be what it is. I’m better off not fighting it. When I fight it, I become a caged animal. I felt that way on the plane, nowhere to go, no way out. It happens other times, too. It’s a horrible, sufficating place to be. A place that you can’t even scream or fight or cry your way out of.
Last night I dreamt about Carl. It was a kind, gentle dream…nothing so much happened in the dream as I just felt “touched” by his spirit. I wish I could remember it better. He laid a softness over my lungs so that I would stop coughing and find my way to sleep (I’ve had to sleep sitting up for the past two nights). Needless to say, I slept good. He helped someone else as he was taking care of me, too. Just like Carl to be so sweet and thoughtful. Not just to me, but to others, too.
I’m grateful for my time in Florida. It didn’t solve anything, but I’m quite certain that it helped me in ways that will continue to quietly, mysteriously reveal themselves over time. With my return to this northern landscape, I wonder how I am to navigate the world in the form of this fragile fawn-like self. This is not the me that I’m used to. My usual action-oriented ways probably aren’t going to save me this time, at least not any time soon.
This morning I went searching for images of newborn fawns and, despite extreme vulnerability, what I noticed the most in all of them was a nascent sort of resilience. Nascent is a beautiful word. It means to display signs of future potential. It is embryonic, budding, young. Despite the barrenness of this current landscape, I will trust that the rain or the spring might bring forth unimaginable beauty in even the tiniest of flowers. For now, I curl and pray into that thought. I am helpless, but breathing.
I love you, Carl. You…still so alive, even in your absence.
Image credit: Joanna Powell Colbert
(originally published Dec 11, 2014}