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Late afternoon: Long Dark Teatime of the Soul
Late afternoon: Long Dark Teatime of the Soul
Late afternoons feel weird to me. I start my days early, long before dawn. By 3PM or 4PM I need to kick back, but have a hard time centering myself to achieve the necessary internal quiet.
The hours between 3PM and 6PM seem to take days. They drag. Lots of animals around the house, and it seems to be a hard time for them, too. In the summer, the late afternoon heat coupled with the restless tension stretches all our nerves.
In the not so distant past this was the time that I would start looking expectantly for my wife to come home. When we lived in western Oregon, I would set my comfortable chair out in the front garden and write. I would position myself so that I could see blocks down the street in the direction that she would be walking from. I could spot her from a long ways away. Her every move was distinctive. My eyes rarely left her as she walked toward me and our home.
When we moved here to SE Idaho we were just becoming aware of the gap that was opening between us. I was of course second to realize it.
In the cold light of reflection I can truthfully say, with her agreement I am sure, that there was extraordinary love between us. That awful gap just couldn't be closed though and continued its awful progress. Our paths were diverging and not because we wanted them to. But eventually we had to face the truth, that our paths would not take us through life together and that there was a greater calling holding court.
It took three long, hard years for those paths to separate completely. It would have been so much easier had we hated each other, or even been angry at each other. No easy way out for us, though.
She is twenty years younger than I. One day I had to sit down and remind myself that when I was her age I had compelling needs too. We were (are) both very spiritual, myself moving parallel mostly to Buddhist thought and she mostly to Toltec philosophy. Some twenty years ago I had taken the opportunity to invest five years in reflective retreat, leaving "normal" life aside temporarily. I thought back to those years and that experience. I couldn't deny her the same growth. I understood it was her turn. The nature of the experience is one of movement, release and recapitulation. Lives become former lives.
Ultimately, the petty daily stuff that we tried to base our divorce on was just that. This diverging of lives wrenched both of us to our core. But she had the courage to press forward. In the end, so did I.
The separation of our paths was marked by much of what any normal divorce is made of. Hurt feelings, frustration. Words spoken that cut to the core. Behaviors and actions that challenged self-worth, threatened integrity. But we never stopped really caring about each other. I'm not sure we liked each other too much by the end. We were too far inside the experience to understand it, and when we're talking about loving and leaving who the hell can keep his/her head on straight?
I understand she has taken a teacher/guide. Gone to India to begin her spiritual time. When a person engages in that quest, all else falls behind, dissolves into insubstantial dust. That is where her memory of me lies, I know.
This marks the first time that I (a fairly prolific writer) have attempted to write about it. Reading it, the work is wholly inadequate in explaining it. I'm pretty sure that there are no words for it really.
This vessel that is my body that contains this life hates to admit that she reminded me about something wonderful about life. We can persist, if our paths have integrity. Don't hold on to the hurt feelings, perceived injustices, indignant outrages of the ego. Release.
Ah. There we are. Ten PM. Dark and cool. Quiet in the house, except for the bordie collie that NEVER is not busy. I wonder what the hell she's chewing on now? A few weeks ago it was a $200 microphone cable. OK. I better check....
That's more like it. Now this is life with a smile on its face.
7/17/2005 7:15 am
So compelling ... so quietly soothing !|
7/18/2005 9:53 am
New blogger here.. Is your x-yin more "advanced" than you?|
Did she not head off to learn more?.. how are you doing? u ok?
7/20/2005 7:03 pm
You obviously still love her. And you are still working out the pain. Sorry to here of your loss. The divorce process can take a while to finish. The experts say "a year." For me, it was two or three before I felt grounded again... and when I looked around... the ground was a very different terrain from the place I had left. Good luck.|