Sometimes I feel deep tiredness tinged with sadness. Sometimes it is hard to understand that the slog is worth slogging. Loss can seem impervious to love.
The past few days I have felt a change in our world. Tonight as we were driving home I said with lament, “I just want my home back, I just want my life back. I am tired of going home to a place I don’t understand, I am tired of being tired, I am tired of not exercising. I am tired of not having our usual food. I just want my life back.” I went on saying, “I know I cannot have my things back. I cannot have my books and my antiques. I cannot have my letters and my clothes and my luggage and all those things. I know they are gone. I just want to go home. I want to be in a place that is ours.”
When I stated that I knew I could not have our things back I realized that I was used to the idea that they were gone. It was not a startling moment. It was not a moment attended by angels or darkness. It was just a moment. An important moment. It was a moment sustained by love.
Being used to loss is a feeling of quietude. It is not defeat but a settling down of the feathers of distress. It is the swan with wings and feet in disarray setting back into the water, feet below and all above smoothed as if never ruffled.
Being used to loss is very different than getting over loss. Being used to it means that the loss still belongs to you and that it has meaning. Getting over loss consigns the loss to nothingness. Consigning what was once part of you to nothingness devalues the thing that was lost.
Loss that you have gotten used to stays with you as meaning purified of dross.
Being used to loss is not a shadow just out of my vision. Being used to loss is not the overwhelming, heart crushing pain of fresh loss. Being used to loss is not forgetting what was. Being used to loss is loss as a companion. Loss as a companion tempers the soul tuning it to resonate to the tender parts of life; to the pain of the soul and the pain of love. Loss changes you, alone it can diminish you. Loss as a companion invites what was and what was lost into wholeness.
My companion loss showed me that the fire-wrought person I was who struggled to get to this moment is no longer necessary. To move forward I can put down the struggle and emerge refined by the fire.
Tonight I feel a deep tiredness, tinged with love not with sadness. It is tinged with the realization that the old times are dead, and that new times are being born this very night.