It’s the start of the summer holidays here in Holland and I was just reading in my paper how everyone is getting ready to go to various sunny places in Europe and onwards. The sun trail has begun, cars are being loaded, trolleys snapped shut, sun lotion located.
And where am I in all this?
My summer is so different from this scenario while all I long for is to follow the sun trail and see the Mediterranean shimmer.
My summer is so different.
It is covered in illness, pain, filled with mortality questions. I rage inwardly at my lot. Even if I could escape it all, if I could dangle my feet in the blue, blue sea and have the sun kiss the top of my head, I wouldn’t be following that trail for I wouldn’t have the money. All the money is tied up in the process of illness and its outcome.
“Life is no stroll through a field,” Boris Pasternak’s alter ego Yuri Zhivago writes in his poem Hamlet.
No need to tell me that. I know. Life is harsh, raw, unfair with just here and there a rainbow streak of mercy to it. All may be sacred but all is not necessarily kind or good. All the do-good-and-good-will-be-done-to-you philosophy is just a bunch of fake crap. Not that you should slacken or give up. Just don’t expect life to turn out the way you painted it. God’s world is not “your wish is my command.”
Something is frozen inside of me, waiting for the sword of Damocles coming down any day now. I sit at my computer and wait, I lie in my bed and wait, I eat and wait. Waiting, immovable waiting.
But still I go. The thing that keeps me going is called desire. Buddha knew all about it.
It is the longing for the dream to materialise. In this case it is the return to health and the promise of a chance for life. And in that same longing lies encapsulated the shimmering blue Mediterranean, a new book written, a grandchild playing.
I need to lay down my burden somewhere so I do it here. Share it with you who cannot see me but can perhaps sense me. I am a woman in pain. I am not strong but still I go.
And I go because…
I do not have another option. Hope is life and life is hope. I am part of all that connects me to hope. These strings keep me upright, prevent my downfall.
She will live, she must live!
My summer car holds just a modest bag with clean pyjamas, a fruit salad, a rose from the garden, some fresh mint leaves for my son-in-law. My car is my mobile home that loyally covers the 100-kilometre distance between me and my hope in the hospital.
I can go without so much luxury but I cannot go without my child!
Wishing you all a lovely holiday!