Me was mentally exhausted. Deep sleep came quickly as she hung tight to Freedom’s coarse mane. Soon her mind began to open to the universe. Color and form came forward, taking her into her dreams. She was back at the county garage, twelve years earlier where the incident occurred. She saw herself lying in a pool of blood after falling from her bicycle… motionless. Melody was perched next to her left ear. She was witnessing her invented friend move into another form, no longer imaginary in her mind. She was acknowledging that they were no longer separate…they were one. They now spoke without verbal communication. Me needing only to listen: to feel.
Going deeper into her universe of dreams, Me spiraled slowly, awkwardly, inward. A bright energy was drawing her in as an unidentifiable dark force was pulling her out. She came to identify the bright energy as Melody and the dark force as Self. Her person was fighting between who she was and what society had defined her to be. It seemed forever: drawing in, pulling out, lost in time. Visuals began to flow through her mind. Words that held emotion: love/hate/fear/guilt/anger/forgiveness. It was the visual emotion of fear that stopped the chaos in her dream. She suddenly realized it was fear that controlled the dark force in Self. Fear had absorbed her person. Fear was the villain that held the power to invade and destroy her journey, her search, to fill her Naked Slate.
Me woke into darkness, still hung tightly to Freedom’s mane. It was late evening. Freedom held evidence of the day’s journey. His body now damp and dusty. His gate slow and awkward. Melody was balanced between his alert ears. They were speaking softly as Me moved out of her dreams.
“Melody are we there? Are we where we are supposed to be?” “My child it is you that must tell us so. It is only you who knows the direction of this journey.”
Me raised her head looking into the darkness in front of her. She could see nothing but was aware of what felt to be a wall surrounding her. Her sense of smell was aroused like never before. She felt as if she was wrapped inside a cocoon. It felt claustrophobic yet safe.“Yes…we are.” “This is where I want to be.”
“Melody do you know where this is, where we are?” “Yes my child…I do. We just entered into the Forest of the Naked Slate.”
Me looked behind. It was just in time to see the last trace of light before the cocoon closed upon them.
It was a beautiful day as Me, Freedom and Melody left the water’s edge. Sun’s rising filled the sky with overwhelming pinks and blues. She knew these were Me’s favorite colors. Sun also knew that this was her last shared moment before the journey took her treasured friends away. This was her final embrace. It was now in Me’s control: her journey to fill her Naked Slate; her travels to unite with her Soul. Sun had confidence in her conviction of Freedom as her guardian and Melody her interpreter and guide.
Their departure: a wrenching turmoil of emotion.
Me, Freedom and Melody each decided separate paths; drawing inward as they took their final walk on this shore that they called home. Me inhaled giant gulps of the fresh air dancing toward her as the waves lapped up onto the sand over her bare feet, water cascading between her toes. Filling her lungs deeply she became dizzy losing her balance, falling to her knees. Looking to the east she caught sight of Sun’s gift that morning; her colors pink and blue. Sun had not lost sight of Me since her early rising. Her morning light quivered as cloud cover hid her moistened rays. She was silent. She could not respond. The journey had begun.
Freedom took his favorite path up onto the bluff where he and Me slept many nights. Walking the hazardous course, his feet stable in their grasp of the earth, he chuckled as he reflected on the numerous times Me would clutch his thick mane grasping the safety that Freedom gave her as they climbed the bluff together. Once settled in their favorite bed on earth, watching the stars that ran through the universe forever; Me would snuggle into Freedom’s warm belly. Freedom would then wrap his head and big leaf-like ear’s over as much of Me’s small frame as he could. He loved his ears. For so many years mocked and ridiculed for their size, he always believed they had more purpose than just to hear. Suddenly, instinctually, he gazed down toward the shoreline looking for Me, searching for confirmation of her safety. Me was just below. Freedom loved Me beyond words. He too was afraid, questioning his ability to protect Me during this journey of the unknown. As he stared into the water’s horizon a vision of Adam came into sight. Calm soon began to fill his body as Adam whispered into his ear reassured words describing his tremendous physical and mental strength. Continue reading Departure-→
Once at camp, Me began to gather her few belongings. They held so many memories. She could not imagine leaving any of her precious treasures behind. As she started to fill her modest satchel, Me’s racing heart began to settle and air entered her lungs more freely. The frenzied pace slowed. She turned her attention inward and repeated over and over to herself: “just listen…just listen…listen to what is being said inside.” It did not take long. It was Melody’s earlier words. “Do not let this false sensation of safe mediocrity hold you back from discovering what can be. Choose only those items you need as you continue your journey, not simply those items you love. Freedom will carry your satchel as well as you during times when the journey’s heaviness exhausts you. Knowing this, you must choose how heavy your satchel will be: for when you are exhausted, Freedom too will feel your exhaustion as he struggles in silence to carry you and those possessions you have chosen to need.”
Me found an over-sized blue diamond hosta leaf not far from camp. She placed on the leaf everything she owned. The magic metal that reflected light: it allowed her to view each morning the reflection of who she was. The woven mat of grass: her bed on where each night she slept as Freedom wrapped his warm awkward body around her. The collection of precious beach glass: discoveries made piece by piece as she canvassed the shoreline along the water’s edge. Me had decided to take nothing except her satchel and one small treasure. Searching through her beach glass she found the one piece that she adored. It was small. It was blue. It was perfect. She slipped it into the protective case then methodically wrapped the leaf tightly around the treasures that remained. Walking peacefully from the bluff to her most special place on earth, Me held firm against her heart the make-shift vault that was embracing all that she owned. She hiked to an area that she knew the waves could not reach. ”I might return someday:” knowing that if so, her treasures would be safe in waiting. Arriving; it was here that she felt most loved. It was here that Sun would faithfully come time and time again for her, just for her, loving her. Together they embraced an extraordinary bond of peace. For hours Sun would warm her heart creating the diamonds that fed her Soul. The Soul that this journey was to further define. Kneeling to the ground and cupping her hands, Me slowly dug into the earth. She did not want to dig too deep for she needed Sun to continue warming her treasures with the hope of someday seeing them again.
Melody watched from the birch tree that had become her favorite elevated height. She sat in silence, watching Me prepare her burial site. She was mentally examining their travel plans and preparing her state of mind. As the voice of Me’s Soul, Melody’s role necessitated providing Me with out of comfort zone experiences. These experiences would draw Me further within her person, listening deeper to her being, finding true comfort from who she is. Over time becoming one with the truth in her Soul.
Freedom too had been watching Me. He stood strong and erect as he observed Me’s movements below. Earlier he had studied her facial expression as she delicately kissed each of her chattels before placing them gently on the leaf. He then observed her body movements as she found the perfect location and created the perfect depth into the earth to place what she was leaving behind. His mind was now wandering. He was revisiting his time: his turn…his journey. He too had a Guardian.
His name was Adam. Freedom closed his eyes as he visualized them together. Adam loved and protected him unconditionally just as he now loved and protected Me. Just as she would someday unconditionally love and protect another. He envisioned the first time he felt Adam’s exhaustion; when he could walk no longer, his legs could move no more and his thirst for water overwhelming. They had been walking for days. Their journey into the Forest of the Naked Slate was now behind them. They could not find water. As Adam carefully labored to the ground for Freedom to mount his warm sweat-ridden body, it was then that Freedom realized just how difficult a journey this was for Adam too. His breathing labored. His exhaustion and thirst obvious. His body draped with dust. Small open sores circled his swollen knees. As Freedom mounted, wrapping his tiny legs around Adam’s big round belly, he thought about the weight of his satchel and how little importance his possessions now had. With no further thought he grabbed the bag that held his collection of past memories and tossed it as far as his remaining strength would allow. It did not matter anymore…
Melody had been awake all night. The time had come for Me’s journey to begin. She knew that this would be a difficult and complicated conversation.
Me was talking to the minnows dancing in the stream as Melody approached and lifted her head as she heard the flutter of wings above her. “Good Afternoon Melody….” “Good Afternoon My Child. ” Me sensed something was different.. Melody’s body was arched conveying an authoritative posture that she had never seen before.
Melody spoke: “My Child it is time.” Melody placed her tiny body on Me’s shoulder speaking softly yet sternly into her ear. “It is time to take your journey deeper into the depth of who “you” are. You must further define your Naked Slate. You can learn no more here. You are too comfortable. You are no longer finding challenge to continue growth.”
“No Melody…No…No.” Tears began streaming down Me’s face. Freedom who was watching from the water’s edge was now by Me’s side nuzzling her small shoulders. Me instinctively wrapped her arms around Freedom’s neck as he slid his four chunky legs to the ground to lay beside her. “I love living here withFreedom and you beside me.” Me was now screaming. “We have the waters to listen to… the sun to nourish our hearts…the diamonds to feed our souls. Why….Why…Why Melody? Why would we leavethis paradise? Why are YOU doing this to me? I need no more. I could live forever just the way we are.”
Melody sat quietly listening to Me’s strained voice. Finally, she spoke. “You must listen to your own words My Child. Reflect on what you are verbalizing. Your Naked Slate has only touched the beginning of its defining journey. There is so much more that you must “see”, must “touch”, must “feel”, must “hear”, must “smell” and you must “sense”. Do not let this false sensation of safe mediocrity hold you back from persevering your being and discovering what “can” be. You must begin packing immediately. Choose those items most important to aid you as you continue your journey… not only those items that you love. Freedom will carry your satchel as well as you at those times when the journey’s heaviness exhausts you. Knowing this, you must choose how heavy your satchel will be: for when you are exhausted, Freedom too will feel your exhaustion as he struggles in his silence to carry you and your satchel. We leave the first thing in the morning.”
Me rose to her feet. Freedom awkwardly struggled to his feet too. Me was now sobbing uncontrollably. The tears rolled down her face as she struggled to fill her lungs gasping into the air above. Freedom silently followed as she began her walk back to camp. He could feel moisture in his eyes as he kept his head low so that Me could not see. He felt her pain, her agony. He felt her everything.
Melody was now at the water’s edge trembling. Her tiny wings lay limp on the warm sand below her. She closed her eyes as she struggled with her own composure. “Someday Me will understand. Someday she will see as Freedom and I see.” The diamonds were beginning to dissipate as the sun’s settled colors began to dim. She took it all in. She took every bit of nourishment in. She spread her wings as wide as they would go, embracing it all. She knew that this would be the last time, for a long time, that the diamonds would feed her soul. First destination: The Forest of the Naked Slate.