1. Fully Alive in the Dark
SHE hears voices.
Engulfed in the darkness, she hears voices. Voices giving guidance, offering words of hope, encouragement, inspiration. Voices assuring her she isn’t alone, insisting the depths aren’t as black as she has painted them.
Engulfed in the darkness, the voices try to fix her, change her, help her. Well-meaning voices pervading her with their wisdom, their experience, their truth. Myriad voices, spouting fountains of words that only push her deeper.
Cold Words raining down on her.
Engulfed in the darkness, she huddles alone. Submerged in a pool of tears, drowning in the incessant chattering outside the obsidian walls that drive her soul further inward.
The voices urge:
“Hang on.” But without light, she can find nothing to grasp.
“Things aren’t so bad.” But the death of hope eclipses every good thing.
“Keep looking up.” But in the desolation, her open eyes are blind.
Engulfed in the darkness, the foundation beneath her erodes, day after day, week after week, month after month. Unwillingly, she puts down roots there among the shadows of death. No bloom, no bud, no flower. A colorless weed in the mud.
No desire to survive, yet desperate to live.
The voices continue, but she has long ceased distinguishing their words.
Engulfed in the darkness, a hand slides under her own. No sound, just touch. The warmth softens her forever-numb fingers. The hand clasps her own, unafraid to grip the murky darkness. “Who are you?” she whispers, straining to catch the voice.
But the only sound is silence, collapsed by the comfort of contact.
In the darkness, the hand engulfs her, holds her, lifts her exhausted body – unable to stand independently – but grateful to be upright.
Deliberately, increasingly, the stabbing pain of lifeless limbs regain feeling. She lingers for some time, resting in these hands. Hands that do not diminish the darkness. Hands that do not promise change. Hands that simply hold her until she finds the strength to stand again on her own.
The darkness has not gone, but she is now fully alive in the midst of it.