I open my eyes. My hands are in front of my face. I see that the sun is shining by the red glow of my skin. I part my fingers slightly and peek through, moving my head slowly, left to right and right to left.
In between the blindingly thick frames of my fingers I see the beginnings of a rainbow. I see the red tinged clouds as the sun rises in the sky. I notice a flicker of wings, of something soaring through the air. I see the moon; the moon that lingers, its last shimmer of brightness after its glorious performance the night before.
I hear two people laughing; the sound makes me take a sharp intake of breath, I turn towards the beckoning sound and just see them embrace before they move out of sight. I’m curious, what is it to live and love?
I move my hands away from my face slightly to get a better view of the world. A sad melancholic song reaches my ears and sails through my mind, it conjures up an image of an old man who is lost without his partner; the song is his cry, declaring his sadness to the world. I feel sad.
I start to move my hands further from my face and all the beauty and the sadness comes rushing towards me, ready to overwhelm me and teach me to embrace life. My fingers start to whisper...”what are you doing, you can’t handle this, what if someone comes and shoots the beautiful moon down from the sky?” I hesitate, the whispers get louder, “What if you find that loving embrace but actually they don’t really love you and you end up singing that sad song” I start to move my hands back to my face, “yes that’s right, we will protect you”.
I stay like this for a long time, watching in this way, while my hands protect me. They are my comfort. They know me. The longer I watch the more I feel something stirring inside, a need to see and feel more, to connect with what it is to live a life that is not half seen.
I pull my hands slowly away again and I hear the whispers, but this time I understand that they are only trying to protect me from something.... This something can’t be what is out there right now at this moment as I am not allowing myself to experience this life. I suddenly remember past hurts and sadness. I am tempted to retreat but I hear another voice, one that is calm, clear and warm, it helps me see that my past is not the present, my past is not my future and my past is not my story.
I know that I am not living this beautiful one and only life, a life that is full of happiness and joy, but also sadness and sorrow, pain and hurt, love and warmth. I cannot control these things but I see that life is all these things and you cannot have one without the other. I want to sing that sad song as it means I have understood what it is to love.
I am scared but I lower my hands.
Tanis Hogan 23/04/2015