a moment

Reverb December 3Moment.
Pick one moment during which you felt most alive this year. Describe it in vivid detail (texture, smells, voices, noises, colors). (Author: Ali Edwards)

As I scan the memories of the last year, many of which have been wonderful and vibrant, the one that comes to mind most vividly is the diagnosis.

It was midnight. Three trips to the vet three days in a row. Roxy’s doctor was working the night shift.

After getting the news, we were left alone in the lobby.

There was a moment of timelessness, like floating in a dimension just to the side of where I usually live.

My senses were keen yet broad. The large room with a built-in bench around its circumference, high ceilings, the starkness of the white walls.

Framed pictures of nature scenes hung on the wall. Photos of dogs with captions like Sweet Girl – RIP 5/21/09 propped up behind the magazines on the counter.

I could see the texture on the walls. Is that knock down or trowel?

My husband got up and walked to the other side of the lobby. As though he couldn’t be in that spot any longer. Maybe the news wouldn’t be real on the other side of the room.

Faint voices from a back room, a mysterious room with gauze and metal tables and little cages. The room where Roxy was. Once in a while laughter. Oh ya, there are people in the world right now who are happy.

Lump in my throat. Hot. Dense.

The feeling of my hands. Puffy, warm and tingling.

Slumped on the bench, chest collapsed, heart hidden inside. This isn’t good yoga posture. What if I get stuck this way?

Opening my eyes wide to make more room for the tears. Maybe they won’t fall. Or maybe I’ll wake up.

***

There have been flashes like this since — incredibly sharp sense perceptions of the moment. The colors of the trees, the sound of them waving, the birds.

This is not only the experience of aliveness, but also the frailty of life. As clear and real as this world seems, the thread is so very thin.

***

The next day I received a text from a friend who has had incredible loss this year — mother-in-law and sister-in-law died, and husband spent 6 months in the hospital with infections.

Nothing like a dog to teach us about love.

Yes. Love and Life and Now.

***

And you?

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9 Responses to “a moment”


  1. 1 Brad December 3, 2010 at 7:19 pm

    Nicely written! It’s interesting… the loss of a pet is a narrative that has weaved its way through a number of today’s reverb10 posts.

  2. 2 Kristin December 3, 2010 at 7:28 pm

    I’m sitting here mystified by your post – because I can feel everything you’re describing. I read the post about the diagnosis of your adorable puppy and I hope that she is responding well to treatment. I can only imagine how helpless you must feel at times.

  3. 3 geanettef December 3, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    Beautiful, descriptive and touching! Every word made me feel something, like I was right there watching the scene!

    Hugs to you and much love and support as you all journey toward recovery!
    XOXO

  4. 4 blogasana December 3, 2010 at 10:33 pm

    @brad – thanks! i haven’t come across any of those posts yet, but would like to read/relate.

    @kristin – ah, thanks. she is doing ok… one day at a time. thanks for the wishes!

    @g – thanks g, hugs back!!

  5. 5 Karen Sharp December 3, 2010 at 10:35 pm

    Oh, my heart goes out to you in your moment. Yes, dogs are pure love.

    Sad.

  6. 6 JennaFrancisco December 3, 2010 at 10:58 pm

    So true about dogs to teach us love and life and now. Their lives are so much shorter than ours that they can serve as a lesson to be more in the moment. Lots of love to you and Roxy as this journey continues.

  7. 7 madyoga December 4, 2010 at 12:55 am

    I love the image of being in a dimension just “to the side” – I had a lot of that feeling before and after my father’s death. Like someone is peeling open the curtain to pass on, and for a moment we get through it a little bit, too.

  8. 8 @stephestellar December 4, 2010 at 3:25 am

    It’s funny where we learn love from, isn’t it? Funny how thought-provoking this is; I’m not a pet owner and grew up in a military family without pets. But I know exactly what you mean.

    Thanks for sharing!

  9. 9 Kelley M December 5, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    Michelle-

    Great post. I feel you all the way and I do hope that Roxy is holding up well. You have been given a gift; each day with her is another gift and I believe you enjoy those as much as possible. Good for you.

    I won’t get into the details about my moment but hearing a possible “cancer” diagnosis made me feel the most alive this year. I remember the idea and feelings of living life to the fullest each day just in case my days were numbered. How funny now, because everyone’s days are numbered and yet we take that for granted. I don’t have cancer and my normal life has returned but I do long for those days when I didn’t care about the small stuff so much (and yet now the small stuff has seeped back in, drat) and I made so much more out of the good stuff. Why can’t we do that everyday?


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