Tuesday, March 10, 2015
I want live completely in the sun.
This is a simple statement, but one that I have taken a long time to come to. And when I say this, I don’t mean I want to go to the beach, or sit outside (although that would be AWESOME), what I mean is, I want to take ALL of my life into the sun.
To do this, I have to give a tiny bit of back story…
When Andy was born, he was not healthy. It was a tough time for us. Fast forward a few weeks in his life, and we are having long term stays at Children’s hospital. It was a very tough time.
You would think that a Children’s hospital would be full of light, but in reality, that place was dark. They had expanded building next to building with no regard to sunlight or air. Our room had two windows, both of which looked out not upon a sunny courtyard or play area, but upon a brick wall that extended floors upward blocking the sun, or any view of the outside world. I never thought of it until today, but those windows to nowhere, they closed me off. They made it impossible for me to see that the world continued to move, and people continued to go about their business, and the sun continued to shine. Lots of time I didn’t know what time it was, and it always felt like night. It was dark, and it was scary, and it was hard. I spent a lot of time staring at that wall outside my window, wondering what was beyond it.
But we survived, and my son is essentially healthy nearly 11 years later. And you may ask yourself, “’then WHY are you bringing this up Tina?”
Well here’s why. Today I had an epiphany about that time in my life. I walked into that room one person who was scared and isolated and alone. And the irony of the room was that the windows were brick, and I couldn’t see out. I was completely in the dark with the emotions of those days. I didn’t see the world continue to go about its business. I only saw what was contained in that room. And what was in that room was scary and uncertain. In that room I didn’t relax, or smile, or fell hope. In that room I was on high alert. All. The. Time.
Time passed, lots of time, and eventually my boy got healthy and strong. And we were allowed to go home.
I emerged from that room, presumably to a happier, brighter, sunnier place. My son was better. We had answers. But what I have realized, is that part of me has continued to stay behind to stare at the brick wall, stuck in time on high alert, waiting. And the part of me that did walk out of there , has spent the better part of a decade trying to pretend I am the same person I was when I went in. You see, this isn’t about my son and his journey, it’s about ME and MINE.
When I walked into that room, both literally and metaphorically, I didn’t realize it but I was never going to be the same. And because of that, there is a part of me that has continued to only see the brick wall blocking the sun. That part of me has held on for dear life because what I learned in that room is that the floor can literally fall from beneath you and shake you to your core. Grief and fear are powerful things.
My entire world was shaken. Everything I knew to be true was tested. And yet, somehow, I thought I could emerge exactly the same. It’s really quite a silly thought, but I have continued to play along all this time. Don’t get me wrong, I have NOT been miserable or even CLOSE to unhappy all this time. I have a super life. My kids are awesome, my husband is great! My life is really blessed. But I had never acknowledged that maybe some part of me deep inside was holding on to the fear.
That little game ended today, because what happened in those early years of my son’s life HAVE changed me. They changed who I am, and how I view the world, and how I handle my life. I have never been the same. And today when I realized that, I saw the vision of that brick wall out the window in my memory and it struck a chord. Part of me has lived in the dark staring at that wall for all this time. And I think I’m ready to see what’s on the other side.
When the earth quakes, walls crack.
All this time I have been “staring” at that wall through the window and willing it to stand as protection. For whatever reason today I felt ready to let down my guard and feel the tremor. And it wasn’t so scary. And I was okay. Instead of feeling only fear, I allowed myself to see the safety and peace that I have found in my life. And guess what I saw when I peeked through the slit in the mortar and the bricks?