It is difficult to express, starts out messy, dreaming of pockets. I am sloppy and shedding and everything hurts.
I find my way to the Wellspring and ask for help with the ache in my head. I see my heart incased in a cube of clear plastic.
“Why have you done that?” the Wellspring asks.
I don’t know. I can’t see anything clearly with my heart like that. How can I know anything with my heart like that? I want help restoring it. Please.
Someone breathes fire over it to melt the plastic. Who is that? The River Dragon? He swallows it up. Now my heart is in the belly of the River Dragon and my heart-space is an empty hole.
I cry out to the Wellspring, “I think I need a healing. There is an ache in me but I don’t know what it is.”
The Grandmother comes, grinning and nodding. She will lead me, she knows where we need to go. She is old, but the bear will carry her. I thank her and rub ointment into her achey joints before we set off, knees and ankles, feet and shoulders. She scrambles up onto the bear, sitting almost side-saddle, with one leg hanging down and one knee cocked up in front of her, her small body hunched and leaning forward over that bent leg, eager to be off.
We walk along a path in grasses grown shoulder height and higher. Golden and blowing. There is a fierce wind rising. We duck our heads and lean into it, all the while the Grandmother is cackling, “Oh-ho, she really doesn’t want to be found. Hehe.”
It seems the harder things get, the more the Grandmother laughs.
We come to a small wood and in the wood, a clearing, sheltered from the wind. A very small child is there, industrious and quiet. She is playing in the dirt. She is building something – a mud wall to defend herself from attack. When she sees us step out of the trees, she cracks into a scream of sheer terror. She is terror. Her scream fills the world.
I want to take her in my arms, to hold and comfort her but cannot think how to approach without doing damage. I stand facing her. The bear circles around behind. I know he is offering her comfort and protection, but she doesn’t know that. The Grandmother comes over the top of the wall, like a commando, right down onto the girl with an old quilt. She catches the child up and swaddles her, hands her over to me to rock and suckle. The terror subsides. She yields to the comfort of my body.
I know who she is. She is that little bit of me that said it wasn’t time yet to be born, that little bit that wanted to wait, that wasn’t ready when circumstances dictated that, ready or not, the time had come.
She is the bit that’s willing to wait until ripe. The bit that knows what’s right for me and will stand by that knowing.
When I went forth, she stayed behind. All this time, I have been making my way without her. I have missed her sorely.
Holding her gently now, I honor her knowing and steadfastness. I welcome her back to myself. How good it is to stand with her. She rests in me. I rest in the Grandmother. The Grandmother rests in the branching embrace of the ancestors.
It is good.
Little Bit touches my arm. She has the sweetest little frog hands.