I love nature's insistence on redemption. Everywhere I look, I see rebirth, life from death, redemption within and without darkness. There is always life, everywhere. Humanity is teeming with life. And we are life to oneanother, in the midst of hardship, sadness and loss. We help carry the grief, side-by-side.
Alethea is fascinated by dolphins lately. A friend shared with me that when a mother dolphin looses her baby, the other dolphins press their bodies against the grieving mother and carry her through the water looking for her young. Beautiful.
This week, we were slow at the hospital, so I was able to leave my shift early.
The weather was gorgeous outside: brisk with an Autumn-laced breeze. As I started to drive I felt drawn toward my old University, where Bryan and I met.
I parked on a dirt road and walked through the 40 acres behind the school. I retraced my steps from years ago: the slight turn at the bridge, up toward the old Rugby field, the smoothed stump where Meredith and I used to curl up and read books on warm days. Memories flooded around me as I walked toward the Science building where I spent hours and hours learning Biology, Anatomy, Chemistry. A few lights were on in the Nursing faculty area, so I knocked on office doors and caught up on current news of the nursing program.
I was amazed to visit old haunts and see renovated areas with hardwood floors and gorgeous furniture. The nasty, grungy old "lower caf" had an Ethical Addictions Coffee House and Jugo Juice franchise in it. I could hardly believe how much the school has grown.
Afterwards, I walked back through the forest, in the pitch black (I forgot it goes completely dark by 5 pm now!) and made it to my truck.
My heart was full with memories and warmth as I remembered my four years of University. I experienced a lot of joy and deep friendship during those years. Hardship and grief were also near at hand. And as I meandered through the trails, touching trees I remember from years ago, I realized how much redemption and growth has taken place in me, in my life, in the lives of those around me, those I met during those 4 years.
I felt grateful for the hardship and the loss, the joy and friendship. I felt grateful for the redemption that happens, in all things.