From my current vantage point, the world passes in soft silence.  A man with a backwards hat bends over his seat, fumbling in a canvas bag.  The lights have been extinguished and others move freely around the cabin, no standing in line for the toilet, please.  Stay back until the aisle is clear, thank you very much.

The age of the flight attendants continues to astonish me.  I took my first air flight during the McGovern campaign.  When I left Denver later that week, on election day, he had a chance.  By the time I landed in St. Louis he had lost by too many to be questionable.  My dejected mother met me at the gate.  What a difference a few hours makes, she groaned.  I couldn’t even vote then.  Now I’ve watched so many presidential elections that nothing surprises me, not the misfit who currently occupies the oval office nor the jackals which circle outside.

I’ll land in San Francisco soon.  I’ve overly tipped several porters in desperation for assistance.  My artificial knee has swollen and the walking stick which I regained three years after loaning it to an attorney at the courthouse will get use this trip.  I contemplate whether I should have explored getting a new knee while I’m in the pay-nothing end of the year.  But with the old style sitting awkwardly inside my battered leg, the prospect poses its own sordid challenges.

Better to wait, I think.  Better to muddle through; get a second opinion on a new policy.  The metal inside me now put me into a seven-week tailspin at a time when my son still needed me.  I can’t repeat that, alone, at this turning point in my life.  But I’ll not complain.  A few dollars buys me cheerful assistance, or what passes for it in the lives of the transient masses.

Now and then, I wonder about roads not taken.  I reflect on the little assortment of names in my book; the sisters, the brothers, the friends, the companions.  A smattering of former lovers and spouses.    I think of them standing at my grave, eyeing one other with suspicion before dropping a rose and moving away.  I think of the single malt that I’ve made my son promise to serve at the wake.  With the angels, I’ll gaze on the lot with a painful fondness, before turning to those in the wings.  I’ll walk away, up, above, beyond.

But for now, I’m starting down another fork in the road.  At a time in my life when I should be counting the interest in a government savings plan or a corporate 401(k), I’m counting pennies and watching for land mines as I step on each stone.  It’s a strange moment.  My breath comes slowly, steadily, with a whiff of incense to tell me something special hovers nearby.

It’s the ninth day of the forty-seventh month of My Year Without Complaining.  Life continues.

2 thoughts on “Above

  1. Teresa

    Of your posts that I’ve read, this is by far my favorite. Not that I have a right to have a favorite, but I now feel that I know you on a very different level. This is raw and honest to its bones. My circumstances are somewhat different and yet some are also the same as your’s. Especially the scarier ones.

    You are brave, and you are a mystery to me in being so. Good for you Corinne.

    I may yet lose my house and right now seem not to have the strength to fight it. Just too worn down. One beating too many, I think, and I do know what lies ahead and still can’t seem to rise to change it. I have one knee replacement and will need another soon. I haven’t seen a dentist in three years and need that too. You have more physical challenges and I seem to have more mental ones. He has all but crushed the life out of me, leaving invisible injuries. I try to keep a good face on, and I try to see the beautiful things that you are so good at writing about.

    In all of the “Me Too” writing, I keep wishing women who have experienced what I have were finally getting at least the no more shaming of the victim justice that the “Me too” women are getting.

    May grace shine down upon us both, and thank you again for such an honest rendering of your life as it is at this time.

  2. ccorleyjd365 Post author

    Teresa, you have more strength in you than you realize. Wishing you joy and beauty. I’m only here for three days but I will be back in December and we will connect. Be well. Sending love and light.



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