Oh. The roots.
Poisoned though they are,
deep as I've hidden them,
there they sit.
At the public mention of an old name, I caught my tears, but in privacy a few soon fell. It's not an easy task, you know, to be broken and then to rebuild, and then at the height, to realize you still need fixing. I was not as broken as many have been, and this makes me feel weaker, this weak feeling; everything I became feels unwarranted.
In the space between then (that old name and that dark chapter) and now, this aspect of my life has been a quiet pool of healing waters, and for this I am eternally grateful. Lately I've seen ripples, though: inside each crowd now are familiar faces from a time long past. Near misses. Names that roll like bile off the tongue. For awhile there was a pause on these encounters; like noise cancelling headphones, but for people. It seems the pause is over: God or The Universe is shaking my interplanetary dust, poking me in the eye with certain remains. Turns out, my world is still too small to let these people back in.
I wasn't ready for the reminder, and this concerns me. Isn't it bizarre that we can be walking in cool breezes, hair and clothes a-billowing in happier winds, when BOOM, our faces hit the sidewalk. What tripped us? Reality, maybe; a memory, encounter, conversation. Life continues, even when we expect it to stop and let us doddle around in bliss.
For about a week now, I've had a shamrock on my desk. The little plant was dying in my coworker's corner, and so she nestled it up to Phoebe, my succulent, and there they sit, buddies under my sunlight lamp. Apparently, the shamrock has found it's happy place. What was once a pot of soil with two megre leaves has become a wellspring of life -- tiny sprigs grow every day. Right now there are nine new stems, each in different phases of development. All of them have shown up in the last three days. Each day, in the order they came, they get a little taller.
As I sat here just now, staring intently at each new bud, my nose inches from the pot, I wondered if this is how God does it. I wonder if he takes us from our dark corners and puts us close by, on his desk, where he can keep his eye on us; his nose one inch away from the pot. I wonder if each sign of life makes him giddy, or thankful, or calmed somewhat about the insignificant thing that's growing before him.
I wonder, too, if he hears us as we push our way through the dirt, still recovering from our time in the shadows. When our tenderness remains apparent, and we get taller anyway (because this is our nature), does he stop the wind, does he keep us in the light, or does he tear up our roots so we might lose pieces of ourselves all over. Is the ground beneath our lives meant to shake?
I can't answer these questions just yet.