Page 18 - 2017 Autumn-Winter Issue
P. 18

Finding Grace in an Ocean of Sadness

                          by Tina Zarlenga

© David/

                          “Find a place inside where there’s joy, and the joy will burn     Vulnerable to the waves of grief, we search for a beacon,
                          out the pain.” ~ Joseph Campbell                                  a light to guide us back to shore. Images overpower my
                                                                                            thoughts as I bail buckets of memories unraveling in my
                          Never anticipating the catastrophe barreling towards us,          minds eye, the life we once knew spilling before me while
                          I found myself powerless to the energy brought by grief.          no future can be seen. Wondering how to endure with the
                          Time had jumbled the chapters of my life, as it ended a story     fog eclipsing my view as uncertainty jolts me present and I
                          that had just begun with lessons in unbearable loss and           stumble forward.
                          impractical forgiveness.                                          The words spill out like honey from a jar, thick on my
                                                                                            tongue, slowly drizzling a sticky mess into the room. “I need
                          This loss clung to me like a winter cloak, heavy and              time to pass, this is too hard, and I need this pain to move
                          cumbersome suppressing any salvation that once remained           quickly so I can reflect and comprehend what has happened
                          while dissecting my heart. My child has died, and I have          to my life and why he is gone.”
                          been ushered into a dark room I dare not escape as the            But grace does not expand from approaching emotions; it
                          avalanche of sadness cradles me in this isolated space we         swells within them, gradually arranging the tangled puzzle
                          call grief, barricading any light of the future, I gasp for air.  towards enlightenment while mending your heart at a
                                                                                            stagnantly slow pace.
                          Grief poured in unannounced divorcing our former lives            I had to begin with a fresh mental picture, refining my
                          with death and destruction for us to untangle, leaving            intentions through these somber stories where progress
                          debris we will examine for years to come. Bitterness              becomes a smile, not tethered to guilt, as the murkiness
                          deepened the wound and this quest for blame distorted my          dissipates in the distance.
                          view. Abandoning the life before me, with no thoughts of          Tending to this ache produced an avalanche of thoughts,
                          forgiveness in sight, this noxious sore eroding my soul.          words poured out through a stampede of emotions franticly
                                                                                            penned in journals as I softly began the healing process.
                          Clutching the latch, my hands grope to release this ache,         Gently extracting the hurt with authenticity inspired a light
                          each slip intensifying the panic as I fumble to let go. “I must   of kindness within me, a balm that softened the jagged
                          be drowning,” I pant, as the fog slips in and my thoughts         pieces in the place where giving back brings comfort.
                          spiral about, we are engulfed in the depths of sorrow; with
                          nothing familiar in our path, our life capsizes as I surrender
                          to this broken place thrashing out to sea.

                          1 8 |We Need Not Walk Alone
   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23