Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Guest Post: Manifesto

The zombie is dead. I don’t recall the moment when it happened. There was no last clawing gasp, no dramatic wrenching away. Somewhere during the quiet of our time away on the Pacific coast, amidst the ocean breeze, the peaceful strolls and the fantastically brilliant fish tacos, he simply stopped serving a purpose and left. I am grateful for this. My breath seems to come easier, my exhales feel deeper. My thoughts can find moments of stillness. Even though my sunburns still ache a bit, for the first time in months, my heart feels at peace.

I am truly grateful for all of these things but I am not who I was. I have not been restored. Through all of this, the troubles and the moments of peace, I have instead been refined into something new. It’s as though a fire has blazed through my life leaving behind only the essential parts that cannot be consumed, that cannot be reduced. The purpose of this post is to document what remains and to establish a manifesto for how I intend to move forward.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Guest Post: Zombie

Once again, my husband came to my rescue and is helping cover me during my time of silence (and lack of creativity in writing).  Here is his guest post...


Today is September 12th. The day after. Twelve years ago on this day, people all over the world had to get out of bed, put feet on the floor and face a new reality. Life would never go back to the way it was. In their own time, wounds will scar over and fade but after a day like that, we as individuals and as a society will never be as we were.

In truth, every day is “The Day After” for someone. There is loss all around us. Today, someone woke up to face the first day after a loved one had died from a sudden illness. Today, someone stared blankly into a bathroom mirror brushing their teeth on the morning after their divorce was final. There are earthquakes, floods, fires, shootings, drug overdoses, runaways, kidnappings, murders and every other form of human calamity occurring every minute of every day. Without any notice, these things can happen to each of us and to those around us that we hold most precious.

When they happen, there is no going back and, whether we are prepared or not, the sun will set on that day and rise to reveal a new day, a new reality, a new unexpected life where each of us must make some decisions. Will I move forward? If I do, how do I begin? What does this new, unexpected life look like? How do I find happiness when, like Bruce Springsteen said, “…it’s like someone took a knife, edgy and dull, and dug a six inch valley through the middle of my soul”?

For me, it has started with simply putting feet on the floor when I wake in the morning. Even on average days with typical challenges, it’s this act of feeling the carpet yield under my bare feet that has always signaled my willingness to accept the new day. On more difficult days, I fear that contact. I sit on the edge of my bed, my feet dangling inches above soft, fuzzy acknowledgement that I’m willing to be a participant in my new life.