My children and I were in a head-on car crash two weeks ago. It was a near-fatal accident by most accounts, and we are blessed to be alive.
A Sunday drive with my 16-year-old daughter on a new permit had become somewhat routine.
On this clear fall afternoon, with leaves sporting peak colors of transformation, we decided to take a country drive, on which my son joined us as well. For me, it was a perfect follow-up to a morning of meditation and service work with friends and loved ones.
On our way back home, an oncoming car crossed the yellow lines and hit us head on. While we were spinning we took a subsequent hit before coming to a stop.
From a distance I can see
My tears sprang not from concern, but rather from the unbearable sensations of fragility that were once again alive inside of me, reaching outward, yearning to be recognized as beauty amidst the worldly tragedy I momentarily bathed in.
You know I have been practicing with the Mystics, the Buddhists, the Natives, Christ, Krishna, the agnostics and atheists. Breathing it all in and learning to suspend disbelief.
All my practices have reduced the mind’s seemingly primary function to make sense of things and make me numb, to survive,
To assure me of things that cannot be certain or even known, at this time,
The unsayable comforts me now.
I can say now that I have felt the imposing weight of a beast in which we all believe in but have never seen, this thing that without a name would hold little power and not be of much consequence.
But when my little world stopped I felt calm, I can hardly describe it but by an astonished awareness of bewilderment with an eerie calmness, a cool quite calm—
Listening to the leaves fall, as it is, no thoughts, just ahhhhh. Calm.
Cries for help, broken glass, smoke and the sweet smells of antifreeze mingle with a fresh moment with no counterpart, and a calm knowing, something beyond my senses and rational mind.
I felt it press upon me, this relatively real thing we call time,
my entire being looked it up and down,
But this time it was a visitor,
This time I became porous, without effort, this time, I offered up no meal of resistance.
And for me, it moved on. Uninterested with my body of surrender, with my blossoming faith in the unknown.
There was blood in the water, but this time I wanted it there
And I accept the consequence of living a life where I feel vulnerable, fragile—sadness and confusion—
And I allow it to be a part of who I am, as it is undeniably who we are
In these temporary suits.
Author: Bryan Tramontana
Editor: Toby Israel
Photo: Author’s Own // Cyril Rana at Flickr