Thank you to everyone, not only for the comments accompanying this post but also for the love, support, empathy, patience and friendship over the past month and a half. It is appreciated.
The Lancashire sea-side resort of Blackpool is home to an Eiffel Tower inspired structure imaginatively named “The Blackpool Tower.” Standing at 518 ft 9 in tall (158 m) the Blackpool Tower is a great place to view the Lancashire coastline. In particular one of the lower platforms contains a glass floor which, while not advisable for those who suffer from a fear of heights, is a wonderful way to see the streets below. The people and cars really do look like ants! When the Dr and I visited Blackpool we told that we must attempt “the leap of faith” i.e. jumping onto the glass flooring. I am not ashamed to admit that I fell into the “O ye of little faith” category – I did not jump!
With hindsight I realise that it wasn’t faith I lacked; it was courage and the “leap of faith” title attributed to jumping onto the glass flooring was/is a misnomer. A leap of faith after all is defined as the act of believing in something without, or in spite of, available empirical evidence.
In the case of the glass floor at Blackpool Tower; there is empirical evidence to support the claim that jumping onto the glass floor will not cause you to drop to your death. It may not be readily available but certainly the engineers responsible for the structure could provide a series of calculations that prove the glass floor could withstand the “jumping weight” of a human being. The idea that jumping on the glass will lead to fall straight through is nothing more than an illusion.
It was only recently, November 13th 2006, to be exact, a month and a day after my mother died that I truly understood what it means to take a leap of faith. Since October 13th I have been told by many people that “things will get better,” “it will be ok, just give it time, or “it won’t hurt so bad after a little while.” From the time I left Kenya, a week after the funeral, to return to Abuja I sought proof to support these statements. Reluctant to go back to doing the things I enjoyed and talking with the people I love because all they did is remind me of a time when mum was alive. A time that I could say that though my mum was in coma she was still alive, we could still see her, touch her and speak to her. Happier times. A time that had gone forever and would never ever come back.
So here I am writing this blog post. I don’t want to write it because with mum’s death came this invisible line that marks everything in my life. Things, events, people, everything seems to neatly fit into one of two categories: those before mum’s death and those after. For a month I have tip-toed on that line. Not wanting to interact with those things that fall into former category for the reasons explained in the paragraph above and equally not wanting to cross over into the latter because I feel that, in spite of all the messages of “things will get better” I am convinced that they won’t. Yet I am writing this post because I know that the line is nothing more than illusion. Irrespective of how I feel the world did not come to standstill on October 12th 2006; it was for all intents and purposes just another day, as was October 11th I am writing this post because even though I have no proof that things will get better; I have to believe that they will.
So this post here; this is my leap of faith.
Hopefully tomorrow this same faith will empower me to respond to the lovely emails I received….and to write a thank you post…and to do all those things that I have been scared to do…