Empire of Dirt

Another weekend come and gone- it’s so hard to believe that December is literally right around the corner. Exams will be here before I know it followed by a LONG holiday! I am way too excited.

We had a good weekend. Friday we had an impromptu date which involved eating way too much bulk barn candy followed by me finishing my last paper of the semester. Weee!  Saturday I had a great day with one of my favourite people Kim and some quality time with some anatomy lectures. Saturday night Amanda and I caught up over tea. It was exactly what I wanted to be doing for my Saturday night. We talked about when we first became friends when with leave in different cities and we spent our hours in different coffee shops. She reminded me that distance doesn’t determine who is in our community and that our people always have a piece of our heart…we’re never alone. Pieces of our heart are out there in different cities or countries. It was a powerful reminder about the timelessness of some friendships. And of course what a good reminder of not regretting the past. Sometimes I wish I would have know that I wanted to be a midwife earlier…not that I regret my other degrees but it’s crazy that there are 22 year-old midwives out there. But my whole life would be different if I didn’t take the path that  I did…and you know what? I’m pretty stoked with how it’s all turned out.

Church today was also really interesting. We talked about sadness and lamentation and how we’re not very good at supporting people through hard times. It makes us awkward and uncomfortable. The jist was that the best thing we can do is to “be with” people in their pain and just to love them. It was a humbling talk and it felt healthy to think about pain…coincidentally the readings that I had to do for class tomorrow are all about sexual abuse survivors and pregnancy and wow, it’s a heavy topic. I also started off the morning listening to one of my fave cbc radio shows “the sunday edition”– he was talking to a specialist in palliative care (who had cancer himself) and told the story of a Canadian skier who died from testicular cancer at age 30. And then at church there is a very young couple with a premie baby who was born wayyyyyyy too early and has lots of complications. Their hospital bracelets made me sad. So yes, suffering is all around us and sometimes it’s useful to acknowledge how shitty it is. On a similar note, Matt’s childhood dog had to be put to sleep this week and my heart is heavy for my parent’s and sister- in-law who no doubt are heart-broken.

I heard the Johnny Cash song Hurt today and was struck by the lyrics:

“In the end
And you could have it all
My empire of dirt”

And isn’t it true? All of our things, our belongings, the things that rust really are just empires of dirt. How much more wonderful is to have people to love and to be loved by in return. After thinking of all of the sadness in the world I am reminded how very grateful I am to have love. It’s worth a thousand empires.

Phew, that was heavy but it’s not all roses out there.

On a brighter note Matt bought some beautiful daisies for our place this weekend and I got some fun supplies for making Christmas gifts this year. I’m itching to get decorating (which is very unlike me…I used to be the person that HATED Christmas carols in general until I figured out that mall Christmas carols are just bad and there are heaps of good ones if you seach…*sufan*) I just loved our tree last year and all of the fun hangouts and such. I love the holidays. Especially this year when it means a break from the craziness of school!

(image source)

*updated: An important blog expert thought I should add this video so you get the “full emotion of the song”- thank you special advisor.


3 thoughts on “Empire of Dirt

  1. great post cait. so true about just being ‘with’ people in their grief and journey. that’s all i needed and wanted (or should i say need and want) with my recent journey of my mom’s death. we just want people to sit with us, even in the silence and emptiness.

    i was in a hospital today again for the first time since everything happened with my mom. but this time for scott and ana’s birth of their baby nicole. what an incredible contrast… what beauty there is in new life… refreshing amidst it all…

    take care cait. love ya!

  2. I’m a big fan of that song and the video has haunted me for years. The idea of just “being with” people who are in pain or sad or in a liminal space is so the story of Job for me. His friends got it right in the beginning…. I think it is Job chapter 2?

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