Escapes of the mind

I'm reading this book, The Ice Man - Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer. It's like a train wreck. They warned me it would be - all who read it before me. Warned me that I wouldn't like it - that my heart is too "good". It's morbidly fascinating so far - but some of the things I read simply make me want to cry. They find that pit in my stomach of dread and uneasiness and amazement that such a diabolical person actually existed.

I have to put the book down for a time. I've reached the end of Part I anyhow and as I lay back on the bed and close my eyes, I know that I'd rather be driving home from work and getting ready to walk in the door and looking forward to our Monday Salad than here in Tucson, biding my time until I have to flip the switch back on and be who they want me to be for the rest of the night. Thankfully, this time, at least it's not the first time that many of these people have seen me so the need to catch everyone up on the past year of my life is somewhat alleviated. Somewhat.

I close my eyes and hear the sounds of the Astros-Cubs game. The sounds of baseball are comforting me, and I let my mind drift away to the places that keep me going.

I can hear the sound of the ground squirrels running up and down the deck while sitting on the porch of the Western Cabin at the North Rim. I can feel the wind whispering over us as we sit on the deck and look out at the vastness in front of us, seeing the bolts of lighting at the South Rim across the chasm, sipping wine in the cool summer air.

I can feel the stinging spray of the water at Havasupai Falls. The welcome respite after the ten-mile hike. I struggle to catch my breath as I swim into the current and am overtaken with emotion at the fact that I have managed to swim to the waterfall and am clinging to the slippery rocks behind its crashing strength in front of us. We had no idea what was growing inside.

I can hear the crackling of the twigs beneath my feet as the canopy of trees towers overhead on the Groom Trail. Watching the dogs happily running along ahead of us. Stopping to take a deep breath. To take a picture. Because we knew we'd need to visit that place in our minds in the weeks to come.

I can smell the wet branches that started the campfire and close my eyes and turn my head to avoid the embers as I fan the flames and will the fire to come alive once again. I sit back and see the clear sky above me and watch the sun slowly rise from the east where a planetarium of stars shined the night before.

I am on top of Mt. Whitney after scrambling over the last stretch of moon-like rocks. Feeling my heart skip a beat and the lump forming in my throat as the tears fill my eyes and I know that I am untouchable. At least for that frozen point in time.

My eyes are closed and I bask in that perfect moment, nestled in bed, wrapped in his arms. I can feel his breath on the back of my neck and the warmth of his arm encircling my body. Unmarred by the sounds and chaos and confusion and constraints of the computers and the phones and uncertainty in the world around us. Peacefulness, simplicity, hope, destiny, love, faith, honesty, friendship, and trust. Health, knowing, living, thriving, and being. Slowly stirring and smiling and knowing that there is no other place that I am supposed to be at exactly that moment in time. And that the moment in time will replay itself again... and again... and again in the days and weeks and months and years to come - so long as we believe.

I hear the announcers in the distance. Five shutout innings for Moulder.

I smile and know that I can open my eyes and get ready for the evening that will soon enough turn into morning and find me traveling back to where I belong. Back to where my heart lives. And our kitchen - that sometimes we dance in. And baseball and love.

Ever thankful for the escapes that my minds saves for the times I need them most and knowing that the days ahead hold more sights, sounds, smells, touches and emotions to create and store away in the most valuable of caches in my heart.


    it's funny, i know this blog was kinda/sorta supposed to be about your experience with breast cancer, but honestly I read this and find it a love story instead.

    Love you guys.