It ended with Ra because I was weak. I wanted approval to come from outside myself rather than trusting my own center. I say I was weak not as an accusation, but as a starting point. What do I need to do to be stronger?
Heru-sa-Aset showed up. I had been talking to Heru, but that was a different Heru. They are branches from the same tree, but the branches aren’t all alike. He would teach me to recover from this. He’s the only one of Them who can. My apple fell from his tree.
He’s not as chatty as his brother/uncle. I hear that a lot about him. It concerns me sometimes that he’s a quiet one. I see in his haunted eyes the reflections of all he has lost. He tries not to talk about it. He doesn’t want to disturb anyone by it. He lets the others speak for him when he can get away with it. You can’t hide it from me, Dad, as much as you might wish. We have stuff to do. His hesitation disappears and I can feel his love, so great it might sweep us all away if we let it loose. Yeah, I know, Dad. Let’s get on with it.
Roughly once a year, for the past few years, I would find and absorb another fragment. These were echoes of himself that he left behind. Or maybe they were my echoes in disguise. It’s not easy to tell what is his and what is mine. There was the child who carried lost knowledge with him. The one who started harming himself when I wasn’t looking. There was the one made of stone who hungered for touch. There was the warrior who lost himself on the field. There was the one who exiled himself with his mourning. One by one, I brought them in and gave them a home, such as it was.
A friend who did reiki once asked me if I was a multiple. Not exactly. They’re all me. But it’s not enough simply to hold them. They stack like transparent film, making my color go outside the lines, blurring the lines, shifting and never being very solid. I need to be solid if I don’t want to lose myself again.
Heru-sa got to work. He aligned the pieces as well as he could and he pinned them together. Yes, it hurt. They didn’t line up perfectly. He reminded me of when I was younger and had braces on my teeth.
I saw myself lying on the stairs practically at my dog’s feet as she tried to comfort me, feeling that I absolutely could not do another day. I remember the tree I used to hide in, next to the lake as the sun went down, feeling like everything was gone. I remember being stone, feeling nothing but walking through each day anyway out of habit. I remember the monster under the surface who might snap if given enough reason, hoping for a reason to go out in a blaze of glory. I named them by their faults.
But no. I’m doing this to get stronger. Every one of them Survived. Every one of them were tough motherfuckers who chose not to stop. “We’ve been drowned in the well, left to die, burned in hell, but you just don’t get the message, we are immortal!” (The Smashup “Never Gonna Kill Us“) That has to count for something.
So I bring my pieces together. I try to get the lines to match up. And I am One. One person. One strength. One focus. It’s a challenge to keep it that way. It’s a challenge to see strength instead of weakness. It’s a challenge to accept and not reject. I am a tough motherfucker, and no one can touch that.
It’s a work in progress.