Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Stones to remember. Stones to forget.

I believe I wrote earlier (somewhere, I think) about my great aunt and her brother who died young, were buried, and then a great rain came. Because the earth had been freshly dug and wooden coffins float, my great great grandfather had to pull them out, weight the bodies and coffins with great stones, and rebury them. Smaller stones are also left at graves and memorial sites to mark that the deceased is remembered - and to keep the deceased from being dug up by wild beasts or otherwise coming up out of that grave.

For whatever reason, today there was someone sitting in my soul like a dead memory. It felt like a dead thing in my gut that I finally wanted removed entire, no attachment left behind, just gone.*  Many years ago, there was one thing in my life that I just didn't want to remember anymore, and I asked the Lord to take the memory away and He did. I can dig the thing up if I just really try, but I don't go round looking for it. I like it gone. Today, for the first time in a few decades, I was finally willing to relinquish another person and memory, never to recall him again.

Well, long day summed up in a short paragraph is that by the time the afternoon was over, I had a mental list of people and associated memories that have weighed me down for years. In some instances, years and years. And years.

At first, I toyed with the idea of writing their name on a piece of paper and burning it, but that's a bit pagan and lacks the visceral quality that I want to feel and mark the time I give the memory away to God, for good. I've settled on writing the names on small stones (not unlike those pictured above) which I will toss as far out into the river as I can possibly get them tomorrow. I'm literally casting off the weights that have so easily beset me**, throwing away those memories which, by their burden, have done a great job of burying me alive in a grave of other people's shame.

It's not a process or solution for everyone, I'm not calling you to mimic me. It's my process, and tonight I've got three little rocks in my hand calling to mind every wound, betrayal, and dismissive arrogance that I just took and took and took - without protest and without a clue for what was really happening. I'm actually stirring the pot, scraping my insides for every bit of foreign trash that isn't mine to bear anymore.

I wonder what time I can get to the river safely in the morning?

*I'm speaking metaphorically, you dipshits, it wasn't a physical ailment. And no, it wasn't Maggie or any other family member. Who it was specifically is none of your business.

** Look up the scripture reference yourself.

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