Two Fingers on my Pulse

In the small bathroom upstairs sits the only bathtub in our house. These days I feel about hot baths the way most people feel about hot coffee in the morning. It’s the one room in the house where natural light pours in through a towering skylight. Today there is blue sky. 

I wanted to share something profound today but the words seem to have escaped me. Last night, tossing and turning, I reached for my phone to text myself a message in the dark. What I wrote was mostly indecipherable, but I think I remember the root of that thought. It was this:

Sometimes, in that darkness of night, I can feel my heart begin to race. I gently rest two fingers on the pulse in my neck and feel the beats, three deep and one shallow. It’s a pattern that repeats and I imagine my heart with a rhythm like a song. I sit there in the stillness, listening, measuring the pattern, until I remember to let my breath go. Soon I am counting beats and breaths and it gently lifts me back into sleep. 

My body feels the stress of the uncertainty of the future, although it isn’t really mine to be concerned with (the future, not the uncertainty). There has to be a time when I feel like I have done the best … the most, that I can do. When I know I’ve not left to others some small piece of the work that was clearly mine to do. 

And so today I take my own personal inventory. I finish signing and sealing my 50 letters through Vote Forward as I prepare them for this Saturday’s mailing. I review my voter’s pamphlet as I await delivery of my ballot. Clearly, our democracy rests with more than just the top of the ballot choice, although that is the one that gets my heart beating erratically. I’ll do my homework. I’ll write my “friends” that have been unusually silent on the matter of this election. 

And then, I will imagine the chorus of a million voices rising up out of the silence. I love the idea of that. Hope over fear. Love over hate. Light, rising up in the darkness. I will settle into the comfortable cadence of the day, feeling my beating heart and mindful of every inhale and exhale. And through it all I will believe, with all my heart, that good will prevail over evil. Like the sunrise over the horizon, we too will rise up and cast light upon everything spread out before us. 

6 Comments on “Two Fingers on my Pulse

    • Thank you for being here.
      Yep, all of us doing what we can is how change happens. This is the most engaged in the process I have been since my days on the board of SEAMEC. I really do feel hopeful.

  1. This sentence really zoomed out and lodged in my spirit, “When I know I’ve not left to others some small piece of the work that was clearly mine to do.” Thank you for this, your diligence in regular writing, and sharing yourself.

    • Thank you so much for your loyalty to these pages. It means so much. I think in the past, many of us have been content to be silent as things would unfold before us. It is alarmingly clear to me that NOW it will take all of us doing even small pieces of the work.

  2. Yes. The racing uncertainty in the small hours, the emotional tumult, warring factions of my soul, fear and dread versus hope and deliverance. There are no sidelines this time. There is only forward or back. Stay vigilant, BonFyre…*

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