Oops. I really AM having a break from the blog, but I just had to share this with you…
I’m listening to ‘John Dunbar’s theme’ by John Barry, far above the Pacific Ocean. The evocative, heart stringing melody pulls me into a contemplative space. The clouds out my window look like snow drifts on blue ice. It is so beautiful. My heart aches with the beauty of our world. I can barely understand how it is that I am flying through the blue atmosphere of this planet, eye on the curve of the horizon. Feeling so far from lost. Home in the clouds, in the air. On my way.
The first time I remember being in a plane was when I was around seven years old. I was clutching hold of a single rose, struggling to make sense of the painful lump in my throat. If I close my eyes I can feel the shape of the cellophane stem in my hands, I can feel the sadness that overwhelmed me. My best friend Dana had just said goodbye to me in the airport and given me a rose. The singularity of that flower made me realise; I was leaving the safety of being of ‘she and me’. It is the first time I understood the loss of friendship.
The strains of losses, goodbyes and farewells fill the spaces in airports and airplanes. Almost every soul on board this flight must have said goodbye to someone, somewhere. There are heavy hearts and happy hearts, hopeful hearts and the heartbroken. We are bound for a new destination and whatever might come. I wonder about the stories they hold, all these people. I wonder who they are. What are they carrying on board today? Not their luggage; their heart burdens. Are they as fortunate as I am? Do they have a compass for home? A warm nest of their own? Will someone be missing them tonight, reaching out their hand to find cool sheets where their warmth used to be? Will someone be wishing they could hear them breathing, wishing they could rest their cheek against their back?
I sometimes feel so unfortunate. I see how things are changing for me, how much less mobile I am, how much more I am struggling. And it makes me feel a strange combination of desperation, frustration and sadness. And then, here I am, looking out the window; the arcing blue sea shifting into powdery sky and I feel calm. Blessed, even. I get to do this. See this. Be here and have thoughts and words and experiences. I get to make memories with people I love.
I can’t give you all the beauty outside my window; I see it, but so many people won’t. All around me eyes are closed to the view. People shift in their seats, or resolutely shut their eyes to the gift just there, outside the window. You have a window too, somewhere there, where you are. Have you looked out of it lately? Taken deep slow breaths and let the beauty fill you up? I quench the parched terrain of my sad thoughts when I look outward. Don’t look down, look out. Look up. Just, look.
Listen to this music. Come, get lost and found with me, out in the blue.
(…and just in case you are wondering, that friend and I are still friends. We found each other again at 19, saw a bit of England and a bit of the Netherlands together. And twenty years later, we email still. Hi Dana! True friendship is never lost).