The other day I received the WORST news I can imagine. Depending on your situation, I'm sure what I found out may pale in comparison, but this news completely rocked me. It rocked many of the people I know. This tragedy moved me to pick up 1 of the few tools I truly possess & do the only thing I knew to do...that I could do. This came on me, starting in the shower this morning, and finished itself while in class today. At times I was not paying attention as this grew & shaped itself.
Impotent Importance & Other Such Wonderings
When I heard the news I felt like time should stand still.
The steering wheel in my hand was an intrusion
And the traffic pattern no longer made sense.
All the nonsense happening around me seemed sillier than usual;
People grabbing a meal at Checkers,
Traffic cameras flashing,
Boys selling water on the corner...
It all felt counterproductive.
Those of us who love you,
Should have been standing somewhere in the open,
Hands held under the setting sun, hearts open in a collective prayer.
What else could be more important as the news travels of your baby boy, head full of wet curls,
Before you could really know him?
What else can we possibly do as your baby girl spasms from being exposed to light before her time,
Suddenly cast from the womb, and without her brother?
How else can we help as you mourn death,
Fight for life,
And pray for safety
In the unfamiliar sterility of a hospital?
There is no scene of a crime, no place of impact to create urban altars of teddy bears and white candles.
There is nothing else for us to do,
Leaving me to grapple with inadequacy and the guilt that comes with continuing on in traffic,
Laughing with a friend on the phone, listening to music, eating sushi, even writing this...
While you fight to live and love what's left of
The love you made.
Like I said, that came out in class. Since then, more bad news has come. Mommy is still alive, & with a wonderfully loving & caring husband by her side, but she's now got to get well & mourn the loss of her boy and her girl.
I have incomplete thoughts, such as:
The hospital, where no one is dressed like family. This place where blood flows and the people cleaning it up don't know you to say "hey" on the street. These keepers of life & death in a white box full of the colors of sadness & jubilation.
I can't imagine this pain. I have my own version of it. Instead of "the loss of," it's the "never will." Somehow, the pain that comes with "the loss of" seems to cut deeper for me because of how well I know the "never will."
This is backwards. Cliche. Cliche. Cliche. Parents aren't supposed to bury their children. & damn...especially not at the same time. How does grow shoulders big enough to bear the weight of this kind of grief?
I can't & won't continue with this line of thought. I'm actually supposed to be doing work for class & pretending I'm not 35 & prepping for a road trip that looks more & more like insanity. But what isn't insane right now, in this moment? If you recognize this story, because you know the family, keep praying for them as I'm sure you have. If you're only a reader & being introduced to this sadness, I apologize if I've brought you down, but please offer your Light & Love as well. There can't be enough positive vibrations flowing their way right now.
Sleep well precious babies.
Watch me...well, this ain't about me.