Friday, August 15, 2008

Just Yesterday Morning

For Bridget

After I read the news, I sat on my bed and heard the clangs and calls of the construction site across the street. But they couldn’t alter my conviction that suddenly the world had become very quiet. Quiet and flat. I imagined the spreading web of mourners on this morning – pictured my friends around the country reading the news. Thoughts of their sadness added to my own.

I got James Taylor’s “Fire and Rain” stuck in my head; somehow it seemed inappropriate and this annoyed me. So I listened to Hanneke’s version of “It is Well with My Soul” which seemed more appropriate but also made me cry harder.

Those two words – “Bridget died…” – had a finality that was difficult to swallow, absorb. So this is really it? This is how it ends?

I have hated that you were going through this, even as I felt so privileged to have a window on your journey. I admired the strength of your faith so much it nearly hurt. Sometimes I wished it would actually hurt, I wished I could do something to help shoulder the burden, if not entirely eradicate it. I hated the feeling of helplessness, knowing this situation was beyond my control.

But as I wished it away, I was also so thankful for the humbling, inspiring example you set in the midst of it. Bridget, you made me think about heaven. Not for a passing second, but several nail-biting months. And not in dusty theological terms, but with a high-stakes urgency. If it’s all on the line, do I really trust? Do I really believe?

I am so proud to have known you, if only for a little while, proud to say “She came to one of my Oscar parties.” I think of the last time we met, when Diesel and I crossed your path in the Common one Sunday. When I try to remember you, the most immediate thing I recall is your smile.

And there, there is some comfort – in the realization that that smile – expansive and joyful in this life – was only a shadow of the smile that you’re smiling now & forever. I struggle to remember, and to believe, that what feels like finality on my side is the beginning of eternity for you, as your joy is now complete.

Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.


That City Girl said...

this is beautifully written, kw.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful. Bridget would be honored. -MAB

MZPuzzled said...

yeah, I know. I referenced 'Next Stop Wonderland' in coversation the other day and then remembered Bridget talking about having been in it. I can see her face on the screen as the camera blinked past her. That's the image I have of her now...a blink in my life.

I made a card with her once. It was lovely.