Your pain is the flip side of your love and it must be and I understand that
Scott, April 1996, Channeled Writing
Despite the miraculous breakthroughs I had experienced, and the spiritual high following Dee's reading, I kept sliding back into deep, dark pain. I was still in the physical, damn it, and still faced with the apparently meaningless routine of the day-to-day. Though words and tingles were of comfort, they were no substitute for a physical warmth and presence, arms there to greet me when I got home from work or to hold me when I needed it.
As my faith would ebb and flow, once again leaving me in the darkness, I got by as I could. Having survived the first few days of life in a world without Scott, embraced and supported by the many who loved me, I now came to realize that my friends had of necessity returned to the demands of their own lives. Feeling more on my own, I faced the awesome and somewhat unthinkable challenge of returning to the everyday.
What did anything matter if Scott were no longer here? We had started the office together as a family project, embarking on a great adventure together. I had been proud to bring him my paychecks, happy to be supporting my family. Of what moment now were these pieces of paper? What was I really gaining in return for the time I had sold, so dear? In every aspect of my life I found myself faced with the challenge of finding new meaning, with no easy answers in sight.
In my dreams I walked slowly with a cane, virtually immobilized and bent over with the weight of my pain. During my waking hours, I was still haunted by the ravages of AIDS. A pox had been cast on my house, and in one awful moment all had been laid ruin. The bomb had already been dropped right on me, taking from me my heart and leaving me among the walking wounded, but its awful fallout continued to spread around me. Despite the emergence of promising new treatments for the disease, dear friends and clients were still suffering and being hospitalized, sometimes burning up with fevers no one could explain. Despite my best efforts to keep up a positive attitude, I found the hospital visits I had to make excruciating. Each time I felt the wounds deep within me, so tentatively beginning to heal, rip wide open once again.
Even in the darkness of those times, I found some solace in the comfort of new and old friends who had walked this path before me. One gentle friend, who had lost the love of his life ten years before, told me that he still desperately missed him every day. Strangely enough, he confided in me, he could still smell his lover, feel his arms around him, during the highest moments of self-pleasure. Never alone, he felt that the two of them shared his pleasure. When his beloved grandfather had died, he shared with me, he had felt a peculiar and strong mix of feelings but been struck with a clear insight. "We are not grieving for him because he's gone," he'd suddenly realized, surrounded by his family, "but because we have to wait to join him again. His departure has just reminded us all that we are homesick."
From the very beginning, people had sought to comfort me by telling me that I was lucky, so very blessed, to have known such a great love. "Better to have loved and lost," etc. Although those words could hardly begin to penetrate my gloom at the time, I did become aware as time passed that the depth of my grief was directly related to the heights we had been able to reach together. I knew that the palpable immensity of his absence spoke volumes about how present he had really been. One afternoon in May, Daviea shared with me a poem that spoke directly to my heart:
If the night is haunted, it is I
who am the ghost; not the tall trees
Nor the white moonlight slanting down like rain,
Filling the hollows with bright pools of silver.
A long train whistle serpentines around the hill,
Now shrill, now far away.
Tell me, from what dark smoky terminal
What train sets out for yesterday?
Or, since our spirits take off and resume
their flesh as travelers their cloaks,
Oh tell me where, in what age and what
country you will come,
That I may meet you there.
In the poem, my longing was given voice. On a deeper level, too, its lyrical message offered me fundamental reassurance. My pain was great, and I was certain of little. Despite the spiritual breakthroughs of my recent experience, I was still often filled with doubt and darkness. How would I know where to go from here? And did I really care? I still wasn't sure. After reading the poem, though, it occurred to me that somehow, deep within me, I had known enough to find my soul mate. I had made my way after all to the boat where he awaited me that evening. Despite my confusion, I had found my way home.
Were not the same forces that led me to my loved one still at play in the Universe? Despite all of my pain and uncertainty, was I not still on the path? I found these ideas deeply comforting. I was being gently prompted to open up once again, to dare to begin to trust.
To Chapter 14