Schoolhouse Earth

Tomorrow is Father’s Day. Coinciding with the last weekend before school is over and I will be untethered for two months. My body, mind and soul feel heavy with anticipation and backwash. I apologize if that does not make sense, but I am clogged and ripe for regurgitation. I have chewed up this last ten months of my life and need to release things so I can allow what will be new. I also have an “anything goes” attitude which has returned from elementary school. I am ready to rip up my notebooks and toss them with confetti and streamers on the school bus. (We actually did that in the seventies.) This may be the influence of the second grader I live with. For me “introvert” is a verb. I will be introverting soon and aspire to grip the earth with my feet in a steadier way. For lack of a better term I am in limbo.

Today is not a sunny day, even with the solstice coming, and not a day shining hope into my eyes either. The celebration of Father’s Day is causing me to dwell on one thought, and it is this: I want desperately to do something for the man I love and spend my life with, to help him, and there is nothing I can do. I can say that to many ears and hear the suggestions offered. I have had ideas. Yet nothing short of a time machine can change the fact that Susanna died. There is no solution because losing a child is not a problem to be solved, only a situation to live with, as best you can. This grief is both a solitary journey and one he and I are on together. We know each other’s pain but cannot take it away.

My mind drifts back to a day when my kids were very small. It was probably summer, and they were sleeping. Significant Other and I were in our former bedroom on the first floor of our house, before we restored the upstairs to livable condition. We were talking about UFO’s, ghosts and the afterlife and such. We are both Pisces and soulmates in the way we accept being adrift in eternity. He mentioned a dream he had dreamt as a young person in which he saw a very tall woman who he knew well. Perhaps I was dreaming the same dream that night, on another continent. I mentioned how unlikely it was to have found each other, and how very much the souls of our two children wanted to be born. It was a conversation which transcended time and place. It was a conversation about the truth, the real truth.

Since Susanna passed, my ideas and feelings about all that exists beyond this life have changed. I have never completely doubted that there is more, but now fleeting ideas have cemented and grown roots. We are spirits joined temporarily in bodies. As sure as matter and molecules, other worlds are here with us. This is as true a fact as the chair I am sitting in.

Adrift and limbo are fine, but I am certain there are master plans as well. I believe that in some way I have entered a contract to be here and learn what I need to know. To my human self life can seem cruel. What purpose can there be? Why did the universe bring the two of us together from different places in the world, so late in our lives, to make a beautiful little family, then cause us to live with such a death? While we are at it, why must our bodies get sick and die? Why can’t we just leave and disappear, without the corpse, and without hurting our loved ones? I hold fast to a vision of “schoolhouse earth”. With a song and cartoon like “Schoolhouse Rock” if you are a child of the seventies. Just add endless miles of fresh soil and sparkling oceans. With a dream team of other people to connect with, need and love. Emotions rock us like waves. There is no life in a pure, painless vacuum. Nature is chaos. Whatever it is I am supposed to learn, I hope I will learn it and become strong.

Someday, S.O., Susanna and I will be sitting in a heavenly garden of some type, having a tea party on a mosaic table and smelling all of the world’s flowers. Perhaps we will discuss the reasons I cannot understand for what has happened. Maybe we will know these things, or maybe at that point we will not need to. Maybe we will be happy to just sip some heavenly tea. I could tell you about it if I had that time machine. Peace.

By trishfreer

Mother, writer, artist and teacher grappling with grief and loss.

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