Sometimes a place and an experience become so sullied and muddied with the dregs of the past that you purge them from your life.  Sometimes you feel that you’ve sunk so low that you’ll never be granted redemption.  Your spirit flags.  You cower; you shrink away from fields which once held golden wheat.  You bury yourself in the dank depths of a silent cave.

Then a blaze of light penetrates your exile.  A hand draws you forward.  A soft voice beckons you.  The radiance of an unblemished warmth surrounds you.  The ice which has wrapped itself around your heart cracks and falls away.  You take a timid step forward and the path opens to you.

Today did that; and not just for me, but for two people who once crept with such hesitance on life’s broken road that you could hear the quaking of their spirits and feel the tremble of their tears.  I witnessed their emergence from whatever hell had threatened to consume them as their love grew over the last few years.  This afternoon, they exchanged a pledge so pure that its wide embrace included everyone, even me.

As I pulled onto State Line Road today, leaving the party which followed the marriage of Abigail Vogt and John Heitman, I let the last vestiges of a lingering grief fall to the rain-soaked yard of the Alexander Majors house, in Kansas City, which I once called home.  I headed east, to the waiting smile of my sister.  In the morning, my journey will resume, eastward and then north.  I’will spend four days with my son on the shores of Lake Michigan, another lovely  place which I hope to reclaim.  But first I will rest; and I suspect that I will sleep well tonight.

It’s the fourteenth day of the fifty-eighth month of My Year Without Complaining.  Life continues.

Congratulations, John and Abbey.  Best wishes for your wedded life.

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