Your grief for what you’ve lost lifts a mirror
up to where you’re bravely working.
Expecting the worst, you look, and instead
here’s the joyful face you’ve been wanting to see.
Your hand opens and closes and opens and closes.
If it were always a fist or always stretched open,
you’d be paralyzed.
Your deepest presence is in every small contracting
the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated
as bird wings.
Anniversaries of traumatic events can play a toll on the survivor. This poem was submitted on the anniversary of my husband being shot while on duty- June 24, 1990 with Metro Toronto Police Service.
This poem by Rumi speaks to me of the undulation (or rhythm of ups and downs) in the life of a PTSD survivor. As a living organism we need this rhythm of movement (contracting and expanding) to become unstuck from our trauma. If you are stuck in trauma, know that no matter how horrible yo…ur feeling now, those feelings can and will change. They must as it’s the body’s natural restorative rhythm at work and what we feel is time limited. Knowing this could be the beginning of hope for you. Lynne Rusk
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