Who knows how to get an angel in your life? We can look for angels but we cannot schedule for angels. We can have a visitation but often we are not clear that they have been with us until later.
An associate who I had worked with for many years had a very traumatic loss. I waited until life had quieted and called her. Death is a tsunami. Inquiring what she might need she did not dwell on her loss. She remembered our common interest in writing and asked if we could sit and write. She had a book in her, a story of the men in her life. She came after work. I intended to minister to her. I made tea, gave her a card and a candle. We did not linger on her loss. I had had a very recent death in my family. All the scurry and phone conversations and prayers and still my tears were stymied by too much backstory.
We sat in the suns fade, gave ourselves a time limit and began writing. The keys click gave a solace. Sitting there she emboldened me to look down the dark hole of loss. A mom whose child had been snatched, who would live with loss every day that she breaths put words on to the page. I put words to the page. And she was an angel who led me through my own dark. Here is the story she gave me.
Today I sit with a mom who has lost a child.
It was not on the roadside so we cannot build a street side sign to commemorate the horror of this event. He has a name, a christened name. It is this name she said over and over to God through the years when she prayed for him.
Dearest Father, and his name would fall like magnolia blooms from her lips. Petals of hope if she said his name enough it would be insurance not only that his soul would be saved but that she would precede him in death. Her prayers were not answered.
He was sliced from her bosom but never from her heart.
She found him in this expansive room of love. She was already a mom, a special needs teacher. Children were her purpose. Even in a house full up, three, four, from somewhere in the land of longing came his call. One more, and one more…
He came to her scathed as an eight-month-old baby. Taken away or turned over to the state. He had dimples, and bunchy hair and a soft heart.
He had a leg missing and life could just take his breath away. He needed every breath to live. He was not frugal and wasted his words, watching how a one legged boy could make others dance to his banter as he spewed his words about. He did not have his mother fear. He came in from a body that was no a sanctuary. He was a survivor, had death wanted him it had had it’s chances or so he thought. Death is a malingerer.
I am trying to write an ending for a book. One character must die, so I must kill one. I am burdened by this. I feel like the biblical characters that go seeking of Solomon. Someone just show me, cut this baby in half for me.
Should one die slipping on an ice patch, or careening a car into a tree. I have a friend whose son did not die. He lived in a hospital bed for six years with his skull missing from his face, taken when he splashed against a wall and his brain inflated with swelling. She had prayed that he live.
Are prayers ever answered?
I need these women who fill the pages of a novel to have some peace, some closure. I want all those that rad to have a sense of completion. I want it neat for them. I want them exorcized from me. I want my life back. I bet my friend wants her life back. She wants it to be her birthday and she wants him to show up at her party with a myler balloon bouquet that rustles with love.
Another mother, died this day. She was called about twelve years ago. Her work truck slipped gear and came down the hillsides and crushed her beneath it. She say heaven her mom was there. But her children were here; her boy was still much boy. He was just twenty-two. She saw the light but a voice from this side called her back I cannot leave Jake. Some force some thing that spurs mothers on kept her going. She lived twelve more years. Now her son is a man. He got the call, Mom’s gone.
Oh mothers and sons. Once death wanted my son. I did pray, but my power was greater that God’s, I looked into his boy eyes as they spilled back into his head and he said when it is your time it is your time, I commanded him stay. We only want life. We only want breath for our children. The circle is skewed at all loss. I will write an ending for the book. These other stories have none. I pray. And all pray.
While traveling I saw an icon image of Jesus in heaven. His mother lay in state on earth in repose. It was the opposite of my common vision of heaven. I never thought of the mother and how she had to continue to forbear. Death must not win> life must prevail until the end.
And there will be no amen.
“Amen” is a Hebrew word that stems from the word aman, which means, “to be faithful, support, or confirm.”