Words and Feathers and Streams-of-Consciousness
By Tiffany Mangum Cooke on May 04, 2012
Words are the most powerful part of being human. A word separates us from exhilaration and devastation. We never outgrow the power of words.
Tonight my sister's words brought me to tears as I read her online journal about a musician who tried to kill himself. He is here today but won't make any other promises. She sent words into the darkness hoping to anchor him until the sun comes back around. There is so much suffering. We all want to stretch across the distance and hold on to one another, but the fall will kill us if the hand is refused. Better not to admit we are dying inside until it is too late to do anything but jump.
My Hansel and Gretel went into the forest. Gretel couldn't find her way back out and Hansel couldn't live without her. The rest of us do the best we can without them. My words were not enough to lead them home, but I keep sending them anyway. The forest is still dark and cold and lonely. Sometimes words are all we have to offer.
A friend stopped by today to tell me what a difference I had made in his son's life this year. He struggles in unimaginable ways, but his life is turning the corner. My heart glow put E.T. to shame. A few words, a two-minute conversation, and my world washed into new colors.
A later message started, "I don't know if you heard this or not..." Disappointment and another loss added to the week's list. Everyone tried to tell me, "It is for the best...one door closes...God works in mysterious ways..." My hollow words echoing back at me. I smiled politely and nodded my head, but I wanted to cry and scream and swear and any other thing that polite women do not do when a dream may not be shattered but is pretty damn cracked at the moment. I know tomorrow will be better and I will look at it in the best light again, but today it totally sucked. I needed someone to call it what it was and feel with me. Another lesson about being what the person needs and not relying on my stock answers of support.
Checking e-mails and finding more messages that should never be written to or from the people they are going to. Promised messages are eternal in my world. I can forget them in the moment. I can stuff them down with the best of them and act totally fine, but after all these years, the stuff is running out of space. New messages that show I am making the best decision I can make for the people in my life. Things will never change and it's futile to believe the words that pretend otherwise.
When I opened the garage tonight, a feather floated down at my feet. The angels had lots of bricks to throw at me lately, but the feather message was a delight.
Tonight I am blessed in my darkest moments to have angels all over my life looking over me. I have words to rage and cry and rejoice. True friends that love me in my brokenness. My kids that comfort me in ways no one else can - snuggled noses and sleepy hugs and chocolate chip cookies. My sister's music as the soundtrack to my lost days because I can carry her with me when I am alone. My brothers planning a guys day out for my son fighting his own battle out of the forest. So many blessings and angels and feathers and messages and words...I never would see if I didn't take the time to write these words. Tonight I am living life out loud.
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