Healing Place(s)

“Comfort” and “solace”.  Now there are two words I can’t seem to get a grasp on lately.  “Joy” is the third word.  I seem to reach out for all of these things, as I always have, yet they slip through my heart like plasma flowing, and randomly flooding my insides as if through a faulty valve.  

I’ve always considered myself a happy human.  I have a positive outlook on life and I have always sought and found joy in so many different experiences and with so many different people.  Lately I am having difficulty wrapping my head around my new life; the one I didn’t ask for; the life that has me in the depths of despair almost daily.  Oh, I can smile through it…as you know, I’m an actress…I’ve mastered the smile, but  it’s hard to find comfort, solace and joy when your heart is broken into little pieces on the ground. The smile is to give others comfort and solace.

So…here is my writing class homework prompt…”When I am in my healing place I…


When I am in my healing place I…

Well, that is a difficult entry point for me.  I seek healing in various places.  I can’t find just one place to achieve what I need to do. I keep treading water searching for that safe harbor. After all,  I am an ocean girl, and have been lucky enough to find my dream house on Cape Cod so close to the healing waters of the bay I can almost taste it.  It was here that Paul and I fulfilled a lifelong dream, only to be short lived.  We were so happy here together.  Moving here side by \

\side  into the beautiful house we were fortunate to have found with our family, and never thought possible,  was more than we had ever hoped for.  What were we looking for after years of hard work?  Comfort, solace and joy.  We had all three.  Truly.  We were luckier than most and we never took it for granted.  This house, this town, the bay only steps away…it is/was our idea of heaven.  This is where we came to find those three things.   We sat looking at the bay for hours upon hours, pinching ourselves in disbelief that we had realized our dream. Before we lived here, we would travel down as many weekends as we could, almost giddy when we hit the final stretch to our house.  It was a beautiful thing. The warm and comforting fireplace we sat in front of on those winter nights with our Cosmos…seems lonely  and cold now.  The hammock under the tree in the front yard we napped in,  intertwined in love after doing yard work with the sweet smell of spring and the birds singing their songs all around us is a lonely spot now. It swings empty and  I can’t seem to put my body into that emptiness, swinging in the breeze or sitting in front of that fireplace which now holds his beautiful picture on the mantel. 

Now, when I drive down that final stretch to our house, or stare at the bay I am barely scratching at the surface while I ache to feel those feelings again.  I inhale the salt air, hoping it will mend my broken heart with its healing powers, but it reaches my heart only to fall away again with the flow of the tide.   Sometimes I will find beauty and sadness all in one moment.  The beauty of the bay reminds me of  what we had together. It is painful to miss. The despair haunts me everywhere I go, so to find a place that grounds me, heals me, and gives me solace, is difficult right now.  Around the house I have found myself sitting in different chairs inside and out because comfort is not found in the habitual haunts I shared with himl.  The rockers of the front porch where Paul and I spent hours watching the birds, only make me feel sad.  Two rockers…one person.  The empty chair is a constant reminder that he is gone. The twin striped chairs we had coffee in on the cold mornings when we couldn’t go outside stare at me with their open arms inviting me in and when I sit on one, I reach for the hand that was always just an arms length away and I cannot feel his loving grasp any longer.  It is ghostlike now. Two sinks in the bathroom side by side with matching mirrors, lights and towels remain divided. The only reflection in the mirror is mine.  I don’t always recognize myself.  I look so different.  I’ve aged since Paul’s illness and decline.  My eyes look sadder, my mouth down on each side of my lips.  Who is that woman I see there?  I don’t know her.  Where is Lynne?

Comfort and solace elude me now, but I hope and pray that a time will come again when I can feel comfortable in this new skin, joy in my everyday life and solace with Paul’s passing and my living.  I go anywhere I can to try to heal, but nothing satisfies me. I don’t fit anywhere.   My new skin doesn’t feel right.  I can’t seem to relax in it.  I don’t want to.  I don’t want it.  What can I do?  I have no choice but to keep living and seeking comfort and solace.  Right now it doesn’t feel possible, but I will keep moving towards it until it finds me again. So my old friends, comfort, solace and joy…till we meet again, I will keep searching in any way I can. Perhaps I will look for my healing within instead of on the outside.  Maybe I’ll find myself there. Comfort, solace and joy may be somewhere in there.