This place in which we find ourselves after significant loss can be so confusing. We are still clearly on earth, but it can feel like everything has been flipped upside down and inside out, like the colour that once covered everything has been drained, or misplaced, or splattered somewhere else entirely.
I felt the confusion so vividly about six months after my most recent loss, when the grey numbness began to fade and the pain poured in, it brought with it a heightened awareness of everything including the fact that my world had been completely altered, that I would never be the same again: time slowed, moments stretched, my focus became pin-point, I could only manage to take in a limited amount of any one thing.
But with the pain also came an extraordinary feeling of seeing with clarity and that included things that had once seemed small or ordinary – I imagined it to be what it is like to see the world for the first time through a baby’s eyes.
Light became an element that grounded me, it allowed me to feel something besides the internal destruction and heartbreak. I sought it everywhere, in every parting of the clouds, the way it shone down through the trees outside, at certain times of day, in the transition between sunset and that shade of blue-green that fills the sky before the moon arrives.
It still made no sense to me, the upside down floating panic of grief and trauma, but I knew that despite it all, beauty remained, that it was everywhere, even more stark and stunning than before, and that the world would continue its magic making until I was able to stand up again and begin to make sense of my new reality.
Though there was that never ending feeling of wondering “how can the world keep turning when mine has stopped”, I knew deep down that it was not the world’s fault, and that maybe the power of its continual turning would allow me to simply hang on, allow me to be, to be carried by its inevitable spin, its growth and regrowth, its ability to hold it all when I felt I had let go of everything.