Unforced rhythms of grace in the midst of the forced rhythms of chemo.
Good at fully embracing resurrection for the brief window that it comes. Three or four days this last time around. Glories not despised but so seemingly fleeting and brief! Beautiful, grace-filled faces on Sunday. Necks I simply could not hug hard enough. My soul bathed in, desperately sought to absorb the glories that are Trina (!), Gina, Steven, Shalom (!), Sara, Jennifer, Julie, Abby. A granddaughter’s dance and laughter. More than I can remember, but each imprinting, imparting fresh grace through body and soul. Easy rhythms to embrace.
Then back to the tomb for a sixth count.
Will I ever settle into that chair, embrace it?
Embrace the needle prick into the Borgish implant on my upper chest?
Embrace the alien intruder rather than rip it out?
Embrace the unavoidable saline taste filling my senses? Flushing, flushing, flushing.
Embrace the tepid water, the hot tea on hot days when cold burns my thoat?
Embrace the pack, the background sting from the needle, the accessing line, the tethered, inescapable companion pumping poison into my body?
Embrace the snap, snap, snap of that pump minute after minute after minute – the snap I swear I can still hear long after the pump is gone?
Embrace enforced idleness?
Embrace lethargy and listlessness?
Embrace the enveloping fog, the heaviness spread through each limb, the sinking down, it would seem, into the bowels of sheol itself? A new sensation. So tempting to embrace that one. Dare I?
Embrace the seeming folly of ambitious projects and productions made of sand when you are dipping your toes in the pool of death?
Embrace it all. No choice. This is what’s here. Madness is the only alternative. Blind, life-denying religious zeal masquerading as faith to move mountains, Morias that must be past through rather than bypassed. Oh religious fool within. There is no resurrection without the tomb.
We fancy we live on Resurrection Sunday. But it’s only glimpses, if we are blessed enough. Morsels of immortality. Glimpses into man fully alive, passing through stone, through walls and doors. Glimpses only, if we are so lucky. A starving man can live on such crumbs, such lempas bread.
No, though we encounter occasional, matching glimpses into our own personal Good Friday horrors, that hopefully are blessedly cut short, it is on Holy Saturday that most of our lives are lived. The day in between, the day that we leave quietly unheralded, unnoticed each Holy Week. The day of the tomb, of waiting, of darkness, of immobility. The day of stillness with hope wrapped in spices promising in the dark a new day.
Sunday’s coming round again.