Beside Me

Sit with me.

You understand You’re second best. You won’t answer no matter what I say. There used to be someone who would answer.

My childhood bedroom was in the front of our little ranch house. My windows looked up the hill, where I could see the house far across the street. I could see the light that was left on all night next to the driveway.

It was very soon after we had moved to that house. I was four years old.

I woke up in the night to feel someone gently stroking my hand. Profound peace enveloped me. I half dozed in a state of deep comfort until I woke again, this time feeling that my hand had been let go, and my skin was cool where the warm hand had been.

I had not hear my companion move. No one had stood up or walked out of the room. Whoever it was had to still be with me.

I called out, but there was no answer.

I tried to see who was there, but the dark of the room was impenetrable.

I decided to wait. Surely they would move, or speak, or take my hand again.

I lay absolutely still, gazing out the window at the distant lightpost. The light wavered and seemed to dance. I waited and waited. I wondered if I had been absently holding my own hand, and I tried to reposition my hands as they might have been, but I couldn’t figure it out. Nothing felt right.

Daylight slowly crept over the hill. The window panes lightened up, while the wooden strips that divided them remained pitch black and distinct. The inside of my room began to separate into deep shades of grey, and then lighter, and then I could see all around me, and then I could clearly seen that I was alone. Had always been alone. I had to have been holding my own hand.

That’s You, the Holy One who is not there, and that’s me, holding on and doing my best to create comfort.

Sit with me for real.

October 14, 2020 COVID-19 Infections and Deaths

WorldUnited StatesMassachusetts
Infections38,057,6547,747,423140,992
Deaths1,083,750204,2739,647(

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