Where to begin….
When I arrived at my mother-in-laws house, she promptly pulled out all the school pictures of my soon-to-be-husband, her son, and asked me to find him in each photo.
I remember being intimidated; could I pick him? did I know him enough that I could pick him out?
As I was taken through each grade I found him every time. My mother-in-law reacted with a mixture of surprise and relief. But what was I doing, silently as I was tested?
And this that I was seeing is what I remember, it was like an itch in my brain. AN itch that left me with one of those unanswered questions that come back to me again and again.
My husband was happy in the beginning photos, but as the photos progressed I noticed a change. What I remember is seeing a kind of “dimming”, a “shutting” down, a change that disturbed me at the time and continues to do so, even thought he is no longer here. It is the change. And I see this with my own children. The easy smile is no longer easy and I am told that this is the way it is.
But I watch my one son who draws, and I feel like his ability to draw is not as easy as it was. As though he is no longer immersing himself in the object he draws because I can see in the image that the movement of the thing is no longer captured as strongly as it once was when he drew. My son, the one who showed me in a seemingly still picture, that one can catch the movement of the thing in a single line.
How is this being lost?
Something has been lost with my sisters as well.
I had a conversation with a man today about these five sisters who perform together in a group. He said that one of them was the most attractive. I said, that she was the one who worked at projecting what is believed to be attractive. He agreed with this. But this girl has developed her ability to sing and play the least of the five girls. In spending all her time in the projection of how she looks she has lost something. Yet, this man said he would date her because she is the most attractive. He would rather the one that has developed her singing and playing ability the least ( not that she doesn’t have the ability because we all do) because she is the most attractive!
SO, here I sit and think that this is tragic. I think about my sisters. I think about my sister that played the cello beautifully in her teens, yet was so magazine beautiful that men would not leave her alone. As she grew into a woman she was surrounded by men. She became this, the projection of what men want and forgave her other developments.
To all of this I also remember some of the children I taught in school. I was in the classroom and the music room teaching. What was interesting was that the children who would “freeze” when they had to sing were the ones that were unable to perform well in the academics. The ones that became fear could not sing at all. I wondered how could this happen so young? I wanted to stop this but I didn’t know how or have the time as I had to focus on the group.
This is all making me sad and this will not help , this state of sadness. This “being lost in the question” of why this exists.
Where am I this? Is this sadness really for my self? What we have done and what we do is RIGHT IN FRONT OF US.