Time On My Hands

Time on my skin like sun and the rain. Time in my hair like wind across my face. In my veins, in the dreams I dream at night where I soar beyond every boundary, outside of time that has no definition. The road at my back and the road ahead. Walking, watching, waking. Opening up each moment like a present.

I have stolen all the flowers and filled each corner of the attic with their scent. I have discovered Debussy’s Pavane in E Minor, my anthem of now.

I think of this, T.S. Eliot…Where is the Life we have lost in living?

My little Buddha Boy, my grandson Hayden has a blanket he calls his Buddy. He said the blue stripe running through it is a lake. I have taken to carrying on my person a small heart shaped crystal amethyst. My buddy. A funny thing, always walking with this in my hand, such comfort. Sleeping and finding it beside me in the morning, during the night. I palm its smoothness and it is soft and hard at the same time. Instantly it warms to my touch. I feel it pulsing. An amethyst has the power of healing. My purple heart of courage. So much of this life for me is falling away faster and faster. Not in a destructive, diminishing way, but in a necessary way.

A long time ago my friend Ruth brought me back a rock from her family vacation at a northern Ontario lake. She theorized that it was the perfect rock because it had a small hole in it. All its weaknesses had been eroded and washed away and what was left was its strength. I immediately threaded a leather thong through it and tied it to my belt. I was David to any Goliath, and so I walked through high school halls.

It’s not the unknown that I fear now. I fear the known. I fear holding on to any falseness that is meant to crumble. I am getting it. I am getting it. It is the invisible that is the most enduring, that’s where I want to stake my claim. This is where I will commit my heart.

I think of a story that Anne Lamott tells of autistic people so overwhelmed that they cannot cross a room. But their therapists devised a plan, and strung a rope from one side of the room to the other. And at first they clung, but then they crossed, and they made their way to the other side. That rope became a clothesline, and then eventually a strong, thin fishing line. They crossed. The day came when they were each handed a single 12 inch piece of fishing line. They crossed.

The courage to believe in the invisible strength.

I love my friends. I love how they get up in the morning and cope with their loneliness, the relentlessness of employment, the particular staggering peaks and sorrowing valleys that come their way. They hope for their children with a devotion that never dies. They spin kindness and grace and humour through their days. Armed with their buddies; their red shoes and dream catchers, the tucked picture of the kids, the memory of a touch on their skin. They walk, wending their way through the known and the unknown with whatever talismans, or whatever holes their courage seeps through.

I am feeling an utmost gratitude for the holes in my life. The invisible, the unknown, is more tangible to me now than ever before. The holes are encircled by such strength and love. I am hearing the flowers, smelling the music, seeing the invisible. Taking my time, I am touching the sky.

Good Life

…for my friends…

4 Responses to “Time On My Hands”

  1. WENDY says:

    oh my, oh my. . . . this is so lovely and strong, with peace.
    please take all the flowers so they can be appreciated before they lose their summer sun. yes, I am tucking away my pictures and walking forward.
    love you and your red hair shining in the sun.

  2. Gudrun says:

    Hi Diane:
    I love Hayden’s blue lake – wonderful imagination. I’ve got a polished pink quartz heart – you’ve just reminded me to carry it with me again.
    Thanks for the wonderful post.

  3. cathy says:

    Wonderful to read you Diane….and isn’t it what is left unsaid, that stuff in the silence, or what is written between the lines that really captures us.
    always Diane;

  4. Cylia says:

    my courageous friend, so accepting and loving
    kids — a gift to show us how to live in the moment.
    talismans — evoking groundedness, connectedness…
    love your writing….I am grateful to call you friend, love, cyl

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