Saturday, May 8, 2010

Saying all that cannot be said in words

They each step down from the truck taxi to say goodbye. The one driving suggests a group hug and we all quickly form a circle. They each place their hands on my back and I on theirs and we lean forward so that our heads meet in the middle, resulting in us each looking at our sandaled feet. Between telling me thank you in the most genuine of ways and asking me if I am packed, they manage to be truly genuine and in the moment as well as active and forward thinking. I like the way they each can fluctuate from a mindful relaxed presence to a multi-tasking high speed processor; I have yet to figure out how they do it, when I try I just look flustered. I want to hug each one of them but I can’t, I’m not sure if my newly acquired comfort with embracing and being embraced will translate here. I smile and think of how proud my friend Jules would be if she could see me now. Her relentless persistence gradually desensitizing me to touch has worked. I used to be awkward and uncomfortable with gestures of intimacy and would get confused with the three cheek kiss greeting of Europe, finding myself head butting unprepared recipients. I like the way I have changed and have learned to appreciate everything from a wink to fingers dancing on my arms to a warm embrace fluttering over my shoulders, to a gentle touch on my back. Saying all that cannot be said in words, the nonverbal world of communication has transformed my experience of the world and its people and I feel my throat get tight and my eyes get hot and I know it is once again time for me to cry the honorable tears of loss. It is only those meaningful relationships that we grieved when lost and I know deep in my heart and soul that the meaning I have found here has been deep and profound.

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