My voice went missing the first day of March. A head cold has rendered me silent except for the coughing. My writing process includes speaking the words aloud to hear how they sound and feel. I stand and read to the woman in the tree beyond my window and, if she's listening, edits for the words begin to flow. Or rather, if I'm listening. This temporary loss precipitated the "tenderly, softly, gently" meme posted recently.
I tell myself to think of this time as a step back rather than a setback. A pause to remind me there is time for silence and listening, time for more eye contact and body language, time to speak efficiently and lightly. Perhaps this is my quiet time before the ravaging emotional storms I often experience later this month.
The best I can do is a whisper as I wonder why any of my words matter. They've all been spoken, written, prayed, shared, and thrown into the wind or the nearest waste basket. As sometimes happens, the grief roller coaster has me suspended at a vulnerable time, when I'm at my weakest. It waits for the perfect moment to let the bottom drop out.
Regardless of storybook rhymes, farmers' almanac predictions, or 18th-century folk wisdom, we can probably all agree; March is a changeable month. For me, it has arrived like a lamb rather than the proverbial lion reminding me how mixed up grief can be especially when a dear one's deathiversary rolls around. For now, I'll honor this silent time and prepare for grief's fierce return.
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