Saturday, 20 August 2016

Hanging by a thread

At times, on this journey, death has felt more real to me than life. Life is short, they say. You're a long time dead, they say. You only live once. To the uninitiated, another's death is a call to life: live for the moment, carpe diem, follow your dreams. But when you have looked death squarely in the face and your dreams are of the faces of loved ones drained of life, it is not so simple anymore. Where once death was a call to life, sometimes now it feels like a call to home. There is so much love on the other side for me now. The pull of death is strong.

With the pull of gravity, grief comes like swirling waters in the plughole, dragging me down. It is hard to resist such a force. I see myself as a spider clinging to a silver thread, battered by waves so strong that they make me catch my breath and lose my mind. But I climb slowly upwards out of dark waters and towards the light. I am hanging by that thread, spinning a web of blind faith and love, even though I know that one careless swipe of a finger could bring it all crashing down at any moment. The instinct for survival is strong too.

I exist now in parentheses. But there is love on this side too and slowly the balance tips towards life again. 'You don't strike me as a person who is ready to give up,' says my friend.

The love on the other side will wait.
For now, it takes all my strength
but I climb upwards,
move forwards,
hang on.