Friday, 15 June 2012

Back Home, Day 2: Crossing The Falls

As I write this, Nik Wallenda is about to cross Niagara Falls on a tight-wire. Apt metaphor, n'est-ce pas?

Today, I got to soak in my old, but rapidly changing, neighbourhood. My father and I took a walk to the bank to settle a few things (I had some bills to pay), before walking over to the supermarket so that I could buy some produce for the rest of my week. Then, I got some things to keep my growing hair in place for tomorrow's wedding.

It was a very hot, humid day (summer at last!). As I continued to rehearse the Conversation in my mind, I got a glimpse of my father in a way that I had not before. Always quick to both joy and anger, it struck me that he was (is and may always have been) a prisoner of his own rather harsh judgements of others. I no longer so much saw someone who was tyrannical, but someone sad and in need of fresh air, in the emotional sense.

I grew in the shadow of his explosive emotions, as well as those of the other side of my family. Yet, I was always supposed to be the quiet one. It had never occurred to me, however, that any of them may have been prisoners to themselves (my mother was the only exception to this).

And not as if I have never been there. I know that freeing yourself can be a death defying tight-wire walk. Necessary, maybe, but I can also understand someone's hesistation to step out into the vast chasm of new relationship possibilities.

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