The Ghosts we Leave Behind

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Today as I was walking home from the grocery store, I saw down the sidewalk a woman standing next to a car with a dog on a leash. The dog was holding himself as far away from the car as possible, pulling at the leash – for what reasons I do not know.

I crossed the street and passed the car, looking over briefly, wondering if they were still standing there, and who had won the apparent battle.

They had disappeared, whether they made it in to the car (I couldn’t see) or headed in to the house, perhaps they went around the corner, walking faster than I fathomed they would, I don’t know where they went to.

But their departure from my own world; swift and sudden, I heard no noise of doors opening or shoes walking over leaves, left me feeling as though they’d been nothing but ghosts left behind, my vision of them just a false memory. There was a sense of a mirage.

I realized that so often that’s all we are, that’s all we offer.

That for some brief moment we make an impression, somehow, someway, and then we move on – and we leave behind the ghost of who we were at that moment. For no matter how hard we try, or how long we yearn for it at times, we can and will never go back to that moment EXACTLY as we were at that moment.

We are changed just by taking a single step, by breathing in and out another breath, by the thought we have one moment to the next.

And I wonder at all the Ghosts I’ve left behind. The smiles I gave, the tears I shared, the snarky comments I made, the documents I wrote up, the dogs I walked, the stories I told.

Of all the moments I’ve wished I could go back to. Places I called home, that I dreamed of returning to one day. People I knew, memories we created, shared. Times I’ve wished I could relive, if ever so briefly, touch on that ghost of a moment again.

I think of how my family and friends talk of my hometown, of other towns, in such wistful voices – “oh, but that was back then, it used to be so wonderful”. How they remember a Ghost Town. A place that is ever-changing and will never be exactly as it was then, on that day when they were 17 and the sun was out and the world seemed so perfect (although I wonder at our memories sometimes, selective to put it mildly).

Though I miss so many things in the past, places I’ve lived, people & animals I’ve loved, paths I’ve walked, snow that falls, and rain that sings me to sleep. They are all just ghosts, memories I have of moments that touched me, that changed me. And though I may long to go back, somehow, magically to just that point in time, what I would go back to would be as it is now – not as I remember it.

Ghosts are not just spirits left behind once the body dies, Ghosts are bits of our souls, bits of the energy of the Divine universe, that hang forever in a sort of limbo. Like a spider web hanging in the corner of our lives, catching moments forever, trapping them as they are then, not as they will be.

I believe it’s so important to appreciate the moment as it is, because while we may look back at the Ghosts in our past, they will forever be just that, in our past. And we, as we are now, are moving from this moment on. Living with those Ghosts can seem appealing, we can forget that we are capable of creating an even better moment, now.

I’ve had people tell me they miss the person I was, and there are others, that they love who I’ve become even more than who I was.

Yet, whatever, whomever, they recall is really just a Ghost, I’ve left behind.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. WordsFallFromMyEyes
    Dec 04, 2013 @ 09:31:49

    Interesting thoughts indeed. I feel you, definitely. Sometimes a simple moment like that can flare so many thoughts in so many directions. It’s proof you’re a born writer thinker, I reckon.

    Reply

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