When you watch the Olympics there are athletes who balance on a narrow beam of wood. I suppose I consider all gymnasts to be superhuman but for some reason I always marvel at those girls finding equilibrium on the thinnest of surfaces. While I have no specific knowledge about any sporting competition, I suspect they are attempting to stabilize their body throughout the routine. When they turn, spin and jump they are constantly monitoring their weight and something as simple as a turn of the wrist, the angle of the neck and exact placement of the hip makes the difference between finding balance and falling into disgrace.
I have felt a bit off center these last few months since the death of my father. I get confused about his absence and feel uncontrollably emotional. I almost selected a Father’s Day card in June. And I find myself preparing to tell him things I think will amuse and entertain him. I don’t believe there was anything specific left unsaid but I suppose I just miss him and wonder . . . all the things people wonder when grieving excruciating loss. My Spiritual Director recently acknowledged the significance of this death by expressing the thought that our parents are “constellations in the universe of our lives. They are fixed and reliable, like a star that identifies our location.”
Perhaps when a parent dies we lose our bearings, something shifts in our own personal galaxy and we feel like we are falling off the beam. I suspect the aftermath of a death is a time in one’s life of lost balance but if I just remember the lessons my father taught me and apply those teachings slowly, carefully. If I monitor subtle movements of emotion and the specific distribution of tears, memory and laughter I might find myself back on top. Moving through the world like gymnast who leaps off a narrow strip of wood and lands perfectly on the surface of the earth.You will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve for a time but your grief will be turned into joy. When a woman is in labor she is sad that her time has come. When she has born her child, she no longer remembers her pain f or joy that a human being has been born into the world. In the same way you are sad for a time but I shall see you again and then your hearts will rejoice will a joy no one can take from you. John~