A Family in Color and Shadows

Her head peeked around the door to welcome the three of us into her office and her warm smile and her long hair carefully organized into disorder on top of her head was all that we could see. As always, our friend’s eyes spoke so much more than her mouth did and we knew today would be one of those unforgettable and wonderful learning experiences, for all of us.

Bug had spoken of an uneasiness about today’s appointment. Would she have to talk? Will we be there with her? What will the room look like? Can we go to lunch afterwards?

You don’t have to say anything you don’t want to, Bug. We’ll be right there the whole time. I don’t know – this is a new office and we’ve never been there before. I’m sure it will be very nice. Of course, we can go to lunch afterwards.

Bug speaks of uneasiness about a lot of things, really. It use to sound like fear. New places and new people would be the cause of tears and hidden faces. A very small person making herself even smaller. Fear doesn’t come around as much anymore, but its cousins anger and sadness do. As time has passed and her stature has grown, so too has her complexity. She has become such an interesting person, which is one of the highest compliments I can think to pay someone.

But that uneasiness, that’s just part of her, one thread in her tapestry. This little girl is mighty. And creative. And deep. And funny. And kind. She is explosive and alive and there is no one like her.

Life ain’t always easy, but who’s to say it’s supposed to be or that easy is always such a good thing.

Our appointment today was to help her – and us – find some peace and understanding in all of this (the love, of course, is already there). “Appointment”, though, sounds so clinical and this was anything but. Today was another way of looking at things, a glimpse beyond what we normally allow ourselves to see, a joining of ourselves and a shared moment with a remarkable friend.

Today was another step in our journey together.

Stripes of sunlight found their way through window shades onto the wall of the office and Bug broke them apart with her little fingers, casting shadows in light blue and black. A paper lamp in the corner and a crystal lit from within danced to the rhythm of the clouds outside passing between us and the sun. Light to dark, dark back to light. Through hidden speakers hollow thumps of a tabla blended with endless elongated metallic vibrations. And all around us were blue, yellow, green, purple and gold; throughout the room and through our imaginations.

We all spoke to each other, sometimes without talking.

I could go on and on about what we experienced and how we experienced it, but that really isn’t the important part. The important part is that we all experienced it together, that we were as one stating our intentions to continue pursuing peace, balance, harmony and happiness. We spoke clearly today that we are on this path together, forever connected. Through the color and the light and the sound and each and every moment, we are here to love each other, above all else.

We are a family. I love that.

image credit


About Mitchell Brown

I am a stay at home dad with my two daughters who are a lot stronger than they look. When I'm not cooking, cleaning, dancing, reading, teaching, playing or protecting my eyes and groin, I am writing about this whole experience in all of its ridiculousness.
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4 Responses to A Family in Color and Shadows

  1. Meka says:

    I so identify with this. You know i have walked this path with the one i call bug. You however gave me another outlook. By going with him and sitting with him i stated that i was never leaving him and that i was there to protect him. That alone was a strong message and one he needed. I had overlooked that in that days journey. Our tribe is a powerful one Mitchell. Each family unit is strong and filled deeply with love. Together we are all a force to be reckoned with. How fortunate am I to be surrounded by all of you. How fortunate that our children see this beautiful example of what family can be.

    • I thought you might. I’m so glad you had that experience with your bug, sis. And, damn right our tribe is a strong one. I learn from all of you on a regular basis and can’t say in strong enough terms how lucky I feel to be a part of it.

  2. Carla Peak says:

    Your words are so eloquent, and the meaning behind them so beautiful. What family should be all about.

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