I loved the kaleidoscope. Although my playtime with it was always limited, I could have spent hours admiring the patterns and creating new ones. The design that caught my attention would be soon replaced with one that appeared even more beautiful than the previous. I don't remember ever wishing for the previous display after its fragile beauty had been irrevocably altered. Each pattern was precious, beautiful, eye-catching.
Like those beads in the kaleidoscope, last year the relationships in my life were irreparably altered. I mourned the losses, and tried without success to reshape those patterns. I wanted life to be like it always had been. But there was no going back. Different emotions came: anger, sadness, despair, peace, hope and acceptance. There was no pattern to be seen, just an overwhelming sense of loss, filtered by whatever emotion was dominant at the time. And then, out of the pain, a design began to emerge. It was different, with fewer overall friendships, but two deeper, more honest relationships, ones that pointed me to God and loved me just as I am, beginning to stand out boldly within the design. And then the many smaller relationships, the casual friendships of church community and mom's group replaced by a different, more sprawling link of the online community. Although I tremble some days wondering when the kaleidoscope will shake again, I can finally see the beauty in this new design. And even though it hurt to be caught in the change, I have to say that this design is much more beautiful and life-giving than the last. I will not look wistfully at the old patterns any longer, wishing for what is no longer and ignoring the beauty in front of me. Perhaps the grief over broken relationships will still come, but now I can finally see the beauty of here and now. For that and for this new beauty, I am thankful.
Joining(again!) with Em for Imperfect Prose: