... this week has been pretty tough for both of us. As we are approaching the end of it let me take a moment to pause, to slow down and reflect. I reckon this will become a letter of apology - for what I did to you and might have done often times before.
It all started last weekend when you told me you needed to rest. You had experienced two nights of rough sleep, now you were short on breath with a sore throat and spoke with a numb pain in your stomach. I was aware of all of these things and still decided to take you on a business trip to the US - knowing it would last the entire week and give us really little time to rest and recover indeed. I know that in the very moment when I decided not to cancel the taxi to the airport I deeply disrespected you.
Of course I have done this many times before. If you and I weren’t bound through time and space into this one being you surely would not have come with me nor continued to talk to me... It’s so easy to take you for granted, dear friend. And to disrespect your needs when you express them subtly. As you’ll guess by now, I feel pretty guilty - which of course doesn’t change anything of what I did to you...
I know you are the only magical chalice, the only alchemical athanor I will ever receive in this life. You are the container of earth, fire, water, air that I am bound into. You are the door I walk through into the spirit realm and you are the living mask I wear when walking out into malkuth each morning. For as long as I live you will not be replaced and for as long as you are well so will be I. And still I treat you like a commodity, like a forest that I can harvest without respect for the seasons, the quietness of nighttime and all the living things that take dwelling in it - my own self included. Many people say their body turns into a burden once they grow old. I know that is not true for us - it is me who is burdening you.
I know you know exactly what you need at any point in time and you articulate it so well: tired eyes mean sleep, a growling stomach means food, a dizzy head means slowing down, a cold means reducing contact to the world, a migraine means immediate retreat... Yet, I chose to numb your eyes with coffee, your running nose with meds, your migraine with aspirin... And all of it for what? To abuse you as a mount without a will of its own. To uphold the illusion I was living in a world where my mind ruled over matter, to maintain the fragile belief I was living in a world that had been made for my purpose only.
Looking at my actions of this week from the inside out, it makes me laugh and gnash my teeth at the same time. I am all too aware of how you react to weeks like this: you shrug your shoulders helplessly as you watch how I ruin both you and I - and see another brick taken out of our wall of defence. Which once grown unstable enough will collapse and allow entrance to anyone among the merciless teachers: diabetes, crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, cancer...
So I keep on leaning on your resilience, my old friend. I keep on playing this game that I am doomed to lose - knowing its price will be immense for both of us. And all of this only because I am too stubborn to share control, too stupid to follow your lead and to childish to learn what really matters... Sometimes I really feel life is growing up way too quickly for me? You already passed the zenith of your vigour, while I have barely left my infant stage...
Dear body, this is a letter of apology - for all the deeds I have done to you - and tried to gloss over with good food so many times. A letter of apology for all the times I disrespected you. For all the times I treated you like a mount without a will, for all the times I took you for granted and appointed myself as king over our little shared space.
It is a letter of apology for every time I separated us by addressing you as something separate from me. My dear body, come here... It’s late already and time to lay down side by side. I trust the night will dissolve all doubts and questions like it did so often - and all boundaries between us. I trust the night will make us one again.
“The greatest thing in the world is to know how to belong to oneself.”
Michel de Montaigne