Not Alone

I have been busy these past weeks, memorizing braille. For a sighted person, this takes less time than it does someone who is blind, but being fifty and a bit drained by life, this takes much of my attention. I hope that my efforts will result in my being able to help someone access words, reading and writing. The written word is important to my well- being and I treasure access to it.

I have preserved in my mind something I wanted to write about last month, which is important to share. I had a dream about Susanna. I dreamt that she was sleeping, napping, in a communal setting with some of my friends and their families. I went to wake her and pick her up, but I had my current knowledge that she was “dead”. She woke up anyway and hugged me. I made a note that I wanted to blog about this in order to say, what most in my circle seem to know, that there is no death. Death is a farce. Death is bunk. Death is balderdash. Reading a story, as a kid, I once read an explanation of why we say in a polite society that someone has “passed away” or is “deceased” because “dead” might hurt someone’s feelings. To me (although I am okay about confronting the real word), “crossed over” is the most accurate. When we leave the body we are nowhere near finished. Things unresolved will have to be learned again.

What is real, and why I grieve, is that I miss Susanna. I want her to be here like I planned. Even though life is painful and chaotic I wanted to watch her go through it. I wanted a daughter so that I could show her the possibilities of being a woman. A strong woman, who reclaims her true place in the world in spite of the centuries- long travesty of patriarchy. I would have wanted to hand that to her like a Christmas present wrapped in a bow. I know that is not how it works. We have to come here and fight and learn for ourselves. I believe that, in the great wisdom of the universal forces, Susanna moved on because her work and struggle were complete. Only the truly magnificent souls can complete the mission so quickly.

On the other hand, I mother a daughter who will not have to walk down the street and know invasive stares which make her feel unsafe. She will not have to craftily remove herself when men make unwelcome advances and do not listen to her refusal. She will not know what it feels like to be touched without her consent. Or any of the unspeakably worse things which can happen to women. Nor will she spend years of angst having realized that her voice is frequently dismissed, that when she screams to be heard, others will shame that. Others will accept suppression and even validate it. When she learns the stories of the women who came before her, her ancestors from around the globe (on both sides of our binational family), she will have the perspective of the angels who see beyond the pain. Susanna’s work may be done for this lifetime, but the rest of us have a lot to do. Things should not be this way.

This has been a long week. Fear is rampant. I have been working lately on allowing the devastation and shock of these past few years to heal. Although losing my child is permanent, I do not believe the trauma stored in my body and soul needs to be. It is not easy to let go of such things, but it is possible to heal, over time, and I have time. I have time and I am not alone. Whatever others are grieving, for whatever reason others are hurting or afraid, I remain on earth to help and love, to the last day, and forever after that.

By trishfreer

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

1 comment

  1. What a beautiful gift you give to all of us in your writing.
    Through you, Susanna’s spirit will continue to live on and touch others…
    Wishing you peace,


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