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Unpacking life’s chaos and circles isn’t always a choice.
Before breaking, she considered the edge of normal an ideal — cluttered with the screw-ups who couldn’t handle life. Now she’s engaged in a bonkers conversation with her heart and mind as she and her mental miscreants scrabble through a facetious struggle to figure out life after loss.
She soon discovers leaping from ‘normal’s cliff’ is a sloppy free-fall of rebirth loaded with cosmic oddities and ludicrous miscues. Standing on her edge, she wonders whether living beyond the boundaries is worth the cost of stepping off the abyss into the unknown. She’s about to find out.
Discover what happens in this unique, insightful story about when your mind breaks and you have to learn the true meaning of living.
She opened her eyes, staring at her bedroom ceiling.
“That was t-too fucking real,” Standby Platitude stammered.
“I needed that,” Sad Heart whispered.
“That was important,” she told herself. “I need to talk to Roberta.”
“What’s going on?” Roberta asked as they settled into chairs at River’s Rest. The November sun was trying, and she appreciated Roberta’s choice of a table in its pallid warmth instead of the chillier shadows.
“Last night, I, um, experienced? Well, sort of, a dream, at least I think it was a dream…” she trailed off, looking at Roberta’s bemused eyes.
“Just tell me what happened.”
“Whew. Well, I stood before a beige doorway, opened it, then stepped into a room. It was a plain space, monochromatic throughout and bare walls. A door on the opposite side opened and Erik entered.”
“Ah.” Roberta leaned forward, listening.
“He was shaking and upset, his face covered in sadness and loss. He kept asking, ‘What went wrong? Why didn’t we happen?’ Then he grabbed my biceps and stared into me. Erik’s eyes shone with silver and gold, sage and copper, and it sounds bizarre, but they resembled windows. Even odder, I noticed layers of color, as if his irises were a staircase within his head. I looked into him and I remember telling him, ‘the time wasn’t right, and you weren’t ready for me.’ Tears flowed, and he folded me into an embrace.”
“Connected, we held each other. The detail was incredible. I felt the individual strands of his hair, the warm dampness of his tears, his ragged breath, his heartbeat. Roberta, a lot of time passed before he pulled away, turned around, and walked towards the door. He looked back at me, within my eyes. I believe he saw beyond them somehow. Then he stepped across the door’s threshold and swung it closed.”
“What emotions surfaced?” Roberta asked.
“Love. And peace. A profound sense of peacefulness throughout my entire body.”
“Why do you question whether this was a dream?”
Silence stretched as she looked at Roberta. The cree-cree of a river bird floated overhead, and the lap of small waves laid the groove.
“Because it wasn’t one,” she replied, the words dragging out at half tempo. “The entire experience was too real.”
“I don’t believe it was a dream, in the common sense of the word, either,” Roberta said. “Souls connect beyond the physical plane. The connection between you was genuine. I saw it many times, experienced the energy between the two of you. When he moved on, I doubt he realized, or understood, the depth of what he cast aside. So his soul needed to attach with yours, which is what you interpreted as dreaming.”
Roberta sipped her wine, continuing.
“Erik may, or not, have any conscious recollection of this meeting, but while his sense of brokenness called yours, the outcome was to heal both. What is your sense of him now?”
She looked across the water and into her heart.
“There is no pain. As inappropriate as it is, considering how traumatic the dream’s interaction between us was, I’m glad and grateful.”
“That’s honoring your soul and his both. I’m happy the pain receded, but I’m ecstatic that you carry no anger or resentment. Remember, I grew up in a mountain family that saw these types of experiences as normal, but this level of information is new to you. Be proud of how you’ve taken unusual events from outside your comfort zone and used them for growth. To do that on your own is admirable, and I love you for making the leap.”
“Hmm, I’m earning my old soul badge, I guess.”
“That you are,” Roberta laughed, “that you are.”