Saturday, November 12

post captivity complications

I don't want to say that I'm an efflorescent butterfly because then people seem to say things like 'I'm so glad you're better forever', and 'Now do every thing because you're a butterfly'. And then they get shocks like,
'But you said you were a butterfly, yet you seem to be in a cocoon, I'm so confused, did you mean moth?'

Life is in, out, up, down, waxing, waning. Serious waning for all us crescent moons. But we wax too, and I am increasingly convinced that we must not only converse about our woes if we want to accurately share our lives. There is a time to bawl and a time to squeal.

Some days, I'm a butterfly. After being a guttingly grovvely caterpillar for two years, it's surreal. I'm a butterfly, in the way that a clip-winged butterfly can be, if I'm calm and gentle, ever so calm, ever so unstimulated.

I don't quite know how to feel about not waiting by the window in a crumpled mess for Ben. For getting his message "The case has gone over I'm sorry, I'll be a little bit late," and thinking, well that's ok, I'm still able to stand, I'll chop the beans. I don't chop food, so it's a bit weird. I did the dishes, cared for my child, strolled for an hour, and chopped beans? Then I sat up (versus slumped on the couch) to eat dinner, in our sun drenched dining room.

It's a bit too glorious to feel that okay.

The trouble with butterfly days is this: I know it won't last and minute shards of sadness zoom around because I want to feel like this forever, because the relief is too excruciatingly nice, and the contrast seems all the more glaringly piercing.

I'm a living oxymoron when I'm euphorically pain-free, because my heart physically aches.

Is it actually good for a bird from captivity to fly in the expansive sky and then be returned to its cage? I lean towards, yes, its better than captivity it's whole life. But oh, going back in the cage.

I didn't know if other human beings also feel what I'm inadequately describing, for it doesn't come up in conversation.

But I found the answer to my question in a book I recently read:

Perfection is beyond the reach of humankind, beyond the reach of magic. In every shining moment of happiness is that drop of poison: the knowledge that pain will come again.

Dumbledore, J.K.Rowling

I had an epiphany reading that: I am seeking perfection once again, this time in emotions. Perfection is truly unattainable and mixed emotions are not my solo struggle but a universal reality. I always feel that the earth embodies these realities, and weeds springing up by daphne and jonquils and jasmine is proof.

The weeks that followed this passage were ones where I mulled and ruminated, granting myself permission to feel relief with a sprinkle of grief for the past and future. I felt a lot more peaceful once self recriminations for heart shards were removed. I thought, perhaps every joy is tainted because of the fallen world? It struck me as a fairly miserable thought, that every happy moment had to be part sad. I needed more reliefs and elations to test the theory on.

Out of the hopeless blue, one arrived. Our impling slept for nine hours in a row. No letters to warn me of her plans, no gradated steps. In this matter of sleep, I had finally annihilated my expectations, because it was the only way to be content. I had decided that the poison of expectation was not doing me any good, and I'd slowly picked it all out.

We had goofy shocked faces that morning. 'How could this happen to us?'

She might do it again in another six months I thought with ineffable happiness, high expectation me having done a solid 180.

Two nights later she did it again.

Deep sleep deprivation and ensuing pain will come again, but my joy was weedless, and curiously I don't have a sore spot under my left rib thinking about it. {When I say weedless joy, I refer to the following day. The actual night I lay on my bed worrying she had suffocated and died, and I strained to hear a cry, please, I just needed to hear a cry.}

Maybe heart shards during relief are a peculiar experience reserved for the heavy grief of eight years of mostly unrelenting illness?

Perhaps many joys will be less tainted by sadness, with a quarter drop of poison versus a dollop, with just a lightly held mental recognition of the transient nature of elation.

I cannot curse transient elation, for the same principal promises transient pain.

Nothing lasts forever.

Except eternity, and I have a feeling I will never tire of an earth free from poison.

No comments:

Post a Comment