People ask me how I'm doing lately. I'm never really sure what to tell them--should I be honest with them? Do I cover it over for the sake of social decorum?
The truth is, I'm doing terribly. I'm in mud and quicksand and feel like everything I do to try to extricate myself from the morass just causes me to be sucked in deeper. I have no energy for anything--I take no delight in anything and joy is completely absent from my life. I take that back: I had one moment of joy this week, on stage, while playing Sibelius's Fifth Symphony. Apparently music can enter the cold, dark place that is my soul right now. Because of Sibelius, I had about a minute of sunshine during the dress rehearsal. Hopefully it will repeat tonight during our concert. It's glorious music, written by a chronic Scandinavian drunk. Hope in the face of hopelessness from a fellow depressed Finn.
It's amazing that someone has the power to impact my life so much. Better to have loved and lost, I know, but it's hard at this moment to remember the times of joy that we had. And when I do, it just adds to the pain of losing her. I can understand the appeal that Buddhism has for people who've suffered great pain: eliminate pain and suffering by squelching desire. Of course it's absurd, but it is tempting in the moments I find myself of late to want to never risk like I did with Meg again. Squelching desire and emotions--that is the safe choice, the coward's choice. I'm reminded of C.S. Lewis in Shadowlands again:
"Why love, if losing hurts so much? I have no answers anymore: only the life I have lived. Twice in that life I've been given the choice: as a boy and as a man. The boy chose safety, the man chooses suffering. The pain now is part of the happiness then. That's the deal."
I pray that I can view the pain now as part of the happiness then. But of course that's the case with death; with a relationship, if things work out, the joy then is compounded into even more joy now. In this case, my loss is a loss permeated with rejection. It's hard to think of the joy then, without inducing heart rending pain now, a pain that tempts one to never risk feeling such pain ever again. I suppose I'll be healed from this pain when I indeed am willing to risk loving again.
That could be a very, very long time.
I sometimes wonder if Meg could possibly fathom the impact she has had on me.