Saturday, April 04, 2015

The moon

I have some extremely dark memories, of a long-ago moonlit night.  The sight of a full moon behind bare branches can be, has meant, an instant panic attack for the past few years.

Discussing this in therapy one day, I told J "I just work hard to remind myself that that was then, this is now."

"It would be nice," J mused "if the moon could somehow come to mean something restorative."

And then she left it with me, as she does.

Several months later I came across a poem written by Barbara Kingsolver that I had copied into my journal during the first weeks of memory surfacing.  Here's a bit of it:

Remember the moon survives
    For Pamela

Remember the moon survives,
draws herself out crescent thin,
a curved woman. Untouchable,
she bends around the shadow
that pushes itself against her, and she

waits.

later on in the poem, these lines:

 You are the one who knows, behind
the rising, falling tide
of shadow, the moon is always

whole.

So I have been working with the knee-jerk terror, for several months now.  When I see the moon, the crescent moon, the waxing moon, the waning moon, the half-moon, I whisper "Remember the moon survives.  The moon is always whole."

Last night there was a lunar eclipse.  I set my alarm so I could wake up and watch it disappear, watch the bright face of the moon disappear into shadow.  I woke Brad up so he could hold me and I talked about Barbara's poem and I whispered "Courage." to the moon and when it finally disappeared, I fell asleep, deeply, peacefully, because I know it will be back tonight, because I know the moon survives the waves and cycles of dark.

And so I know it for myself, the light returns, and the full moon is testament, monument to the cyclical nature of healing and recovery and tonight?  Tonight when I see the full moon, she will whisper that word back to me.

Courage.

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