Tuesday, 28 July 2015

The Grace of Unconditional Love

This is me procrastinating (or trying not to not). Reginald is curled, sleeping in the crook of my legs, head cushioned against my calf, heat pouring out of the pads on his perfect little feet, paws pushed against my other leg, not pushing me away, but keeping me close, for comfort.

His eyes crack, a slit of frustration at my every movement. I am, however, allowed a notebook, held firmly against my hip bone, allowed the gentle vibration of pen across page. Moreover, I am in love. And. I am reminded, directly, of the first time I ever experienced unconditional love.

I was ironing. My mother lay sleeping on the sofa just in front of me. The house held in the late afternoon quiet of early June: children ensconced in schools; parents avidly earning their keep at desks, depots, in front of computer screens and customers. The gentle moseying of pensioners and young mums, breathing in a space, a baby snoozing respite, a point in the day that momentarily demanded nothing of them. An unconventionally magic hour.

The dust snowed rhythmically in the sunlight, refracted and dancing through the net curtains. The iron sighed and steamed; creases desisted and clothes became hot and smooth and all at once, listening to the catch of her breath, my body became love. I was the dancing dust, the dappled light, the steam, the silence, the sigh of the occasional lazy car sliding past the front room window. I was the sleeping mother and the love-filled daughter; the turning earth, held, momentarily, in perfection.

"There is nothing I cannot, nothing I will not do for you" I breathed to the sleeping mummy. And for that moment there were no limits, only capacity which in turn made way for more capacity. I was the expanding, expansive universe.

It was a grace that carried me through the tumble and rumble of the next few weeks, of sleeping at the foot of her bed in the hospice, dog-like and determined she should not now, nor ever whilst so long as I continued to breath, feel herself alone, feel fear at the hands of strangers.

I crashed onto the rocks that were her death. Naked, unprotected, unprepared, like Milton's Satan I fell through the heavens, through the earth and kept falling. My lake of fire the burning sensation of having to continue, to be normal, to be.

Tonight my kittenish cat sleeps snuggled up to me. He fidgets a bit but is mostly a warm furry ball of heart beat and I love him and I'm grateful for this time we have, for his love. This is my procrastination as I wonder how to tell the tale of my relationship with my mother, through fantasy and fiction, wonder if, how and why I am compelled to share it.

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