Down Time

February 18, 2010

Dear Friends,

I am off to Mexico and California for a month, and may not post during that time.  I am recovering from a winter of deep sorrow.  Not my own, though it is true that I feel the pain of everyone I sit with in every fiber of my being.  That’s where this alchemy happens.

In the past month or so, I have sat with: a young mother whose small daughter had a seizure and then died in her arms in the hospital three hours later; a middle-aged woman who met a man she loved, went into business with him, and then he was diagnosed with cancer and died within a few short weeks; a brilliant student whose brilliant boyfriend killed himself; the mother of a teenage girl whose first experiment with heroin catapulted her away from this world forever, leaving her lifeless body behind; a man my age whose father’s death has been the unexpected occasion for epiphany and quiet wonderment; and finally, the entire family of a beautiful young woman who was murdered at her sister’s wedding reception in the Caribbean, leaving the most extraordinary wake of pain and grace, beauty and suffering, awakening and shattering I have ever witnessed.

And so off I go to breathe and hike and write and read and love and renew.

My love to you all,