"Some are bound to die young. By dying young a person stays young in people's memory.
If he burns brightly before he dies, his brightness shines for all time."
~ Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn
My mom was the youngest of three having two older brothers. She was the 'apple of her father's eye' and she and her mother were best of friends. During high school she was the humor columnist for the high school year book. It's like she was pure joy and happiness.
After high school days she attended nursing school but after a few of her patients passed away, she found it too difficult for her sensitive soul so she didn't continue in nursing.
It was at summer camp on the shores of Moose Lake in the Haliburton Highlands where she met my Dad, the very same camp that I eventually went to for many summers.
By the time she was 23, she was a full time Mom, my brother being the first born. My mom's mom had two sons and a daughter which is what my mom also dreamt of.
Some months before my third birthday, on a cold December day, my mother – five months pregnant with her third child – headed off on a journey with my father. They were going to visit my mother's brother, Larry, who was living on a coconut grove in a remote part of southern Mexico on the Pacific coast...
There Larry was...
sleeping in a hammock under the stars
between coconut trees as a fire burned into the night.
Waking up to glorious, sunny days and
warm ocean waters for some fishing.
Yes, Larry had found a little slice of paradise.
Off my parents flew for a Christmas holiday,
flying into Mexico city and then long bus rides
through mountainous terrain thousands of feet
above sea level...
Finally arriving in the remote fishing village of
Puerto Angel where Larry had some land
and a coconut grove in the nearby town of Zipolite
on the Pacific coast of Mexico
She did not feel well one day
Upon coming out of the ocean
She was taken to a hospital
And then flown to another
The language barrier must have
Complicated the whole situation.
The long journey, having to sit, in addition to the pregnancy,
Caused an air bubble to form which may have eventually made its way to the lungs
and so her breathing shut down.
She passed away in some Mexican hospital
Leaving my father and Uncle stunned
Having to break the news to so many who had loved her.
My dad returned on a snowy winter day in early January. All he could give us besides the news was two Mexican hats that he and my mom had bought for us. He told my brother and I that she had gone to a peaceful place and that we could not go there. I am certain, at the age I was – four months before my third birthday – I didn’t understand what he meant. I probably imagined that she’d walk back into my life any moment greeting me in the morning for another adventure. Many years later, close to the end of the whole journey, my dad recalled that I had actually said, 'She'll be back'.
My mother was the fountain of love within my family – a clear channel for God's love to flow. When she was gone, there was a massive void. I went from a happy, loving home to a house with three people massively estranged from each other struggling with an internal battle with no guidance, support or back up. How I made it? God only knows.
And so, I waited -- anticipating her return. Days turned into weeks, months, years. No wonder my life was like an emotional roller coaster ~ the daily disappointment that she still was not back. A quote that I read once had struck a chord within me...
“I asked myself, “What is the myth you are living?” and found that I did not know.
So...I took it upon myself to get to know 'my' myth, and I regarded this as the task of tasks...
I simply had to know what unconscious or preconscious myth was forming me.”
The unconscious mind does not necessarily heal over time for deeply embedded patterns are not so easy to change. Little was I aware just how long it would take to uncover the myth I was living.
I traveled far and wide
But more than anything
I was searching
Searching for a truth that I believed was out there
Or so I thought
Puerto Angel, Oaxaca (waa·haa·kuh) Mexico