Day 32: Sarah Sees Herself in a Mirror

Day 32; 3rd entry

The last four or five days have been a blur. I feel like I’ve started a new, complex, extremely confusing venture. In my earthly life, I usually called the first week of a job “Hell Week.” Here the confusion about complex procedures still comes into play, but the inner feelings of inadequacy don’t exist. OK, guess we can drop the Hell part.

Being loved is difficult. Having all my faults forgiven and my gifts acknowledged, that’s more difficult. The old concept of pinching yourself to see if you’re dreaming is so very, very true; I keep expecting to open my eyes and find myself in some mental ward, being told all this is an hallucination. This new existence is kind of hard to get used to.

On my second day, Belle gave me a book to read, a book that was supposed to answer the lion’s share of my questions. I guess the mental residue of my earthly life was clogging many of my brain cells, because it took me a couple of days to get through that first instruction book. Oh, the welcome-and-here-is-what-to-expect part was clear enough, but the deeper explanations had layer upon layer, like a virtual onion.

One thing that remains: I don’t yet believe what Belle has told me, that I’m loved by the Father. I keep stumbling over things that He put in my path: losing my parents, being alone, the abusive men, losing wonderful Harry who saved me from myself. There’s a little child inside me that keeps screaming “If you loved me, you wouldn’t hurt me” over and over and over.

Finally the book made sense, at least on the surface, and little bits and things I see and conversations I have with other people keep illuminating pieces that have puzzled me. Yes, I’m out of my room meeting people. Surprise, surprise. Me, opening a door and going outside. Who’d a thunk…

Actually, Belle is responsible my adventures into the world.

A couple of days ago I was sitting at the window in my room, reading a section of the book she gave me; I was following the cross references to other books, all of which I found on the shelf next to the bed. The window was open and the music of a normal world wafted in; I still can’t get over being able to hear things. There was a slight warm breeze coming in that smelled of linden blossoms, although there weren’t any such trees in sight. Abruptly the breeze and the delicate odor halted, and silence ; there was a sense of knowing that I wasn’t alone in the room.

Belle was suddenly there, sitting on the bed, leaning back and resting herself on her arms behind her. Every time I see her, her outline is clearer and she seems more, well, corporal. Still, she’s not the same kind of corporial I am; the differences between us are still quite clear.

“Are you finished yet?” She swung her feet, and I realized her feet didn’t touch the floor as she sat there. Odd. She seems my height when we stand next to each other.

“No, not quite.” I opened another book to check a reference.

“You’re an intellectual bull dog” she chuckled.

“Woof, and woof, and a royal growl…woof!” I sang.

“Ha ha. I said bull dog, not Cowardly Lion.”

The phrase “Cowardly Lion” stopped me dead.

“I’ve never been a coward. Never.” I busied myself with putting slips of paper into open books, closing them, and stacking them neatly on the desk.

“Yes you have. Yes, you have indeed.” She kept swinging her feet and staring at her nails.

“What do you mean?”

“You are a coward, or at least have been. Cowards run away from the truth, and you’ve been running away most of your life.”


“No bull. Whenever things got tough, you ran away.”

“No I didn’t!”

“Yes, you did. Oh, maybe not physically, but you did run away. Into a bottle, into another abusive relationship, into depression. You’re a coward, absolutely.”

“That’s a bit harsh for a Zoe, isn’t it?”

“Not really. We’re supposed to tell the truth, no matter how much it hurts.”

I began realizing that she was probably right. But I couldn’t let her know that.

“But what was I supposed to do? Sit and wait for my head to be chopped off?”

“Too much drama, Sarah. Your intensity lets you see only in black and white, but little gray.”

Memories flash through my head of times I over-reacted. I could now see well what she was talking about and, yes, I’d gone off half-cocked. Embarrassing, but it was water under the bridge now that she pointed it out.

“OK, point taken. You’re right.”

“I don’t like being right, Sarah, at least when it comes to those things that make you sad.”

Damn straight those things made me sad. Every damn negative thing that happened made me sad, closed my eyes. What was I supposed to do?

“You and me both, Belle. So, why this visit?”

“Oh, yeah, that. It’s time for you to get off your behind and start contributing.” She hopped off the bed to the floor to come over and help straighten up my books.

I stood up.

“OK, I’m off my behind. What do you mean?”

“Everyone has a function here. Everyone does a job. Sure, you don’t have to pay for things you need, but they have to come from somewhere. Let’s go.”

“Where are we going?”

“Outside first.”

Outside is a scary word. I don’t like outside, and I don’t want to go. My inner child started chanting “Coward, coward, you’re a big fat coward…”

“So, I need to get a job. Fine. Good. Where do I start? Can you steer me to an employment agency or something?”

“Something close. Come on, we have somewhere to go.”

I couldn’t move.

“Sarah, you can do this.”

My muscles were straining against themselves.

“Sarah, look at me.”

I looked into her eyes and saw sorrow. Sympathetic sorrow. Synesthesia returned. I saw violins played sharp in those eyes. I felt the center of me being pulled out, stretched, cleansed. Every vulnerability I ever had was laid out in a line, dusted off, washed. Every incident of the fear of being unsafe appeared like a movie being played.

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Mother, grandmother, wife, writer, quilter, crocheter...not necessarily in that order. Compulsive editor and reader, addicted to fabric and playing solitaire. Consider myself as a charter member of the Rob Springer Fan Club.

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