Wash me clean.

Click & listen:  Wash me clean.  Then read as you listen:

 

She stepped outside, lifted her face, and smiled — mouth open, eyes closed. She’d never be back. Not here. Not ever.

The rain was more mist than rain, and the air teased her lungs with its tepid humidity. Heavy and still, everything felt heavy and still. But not heavy with her familiar pain. No, she had faced the pain at last, turned around and looked square at it. And what she saw wasn’t a victim or an enemy, a failure or an ego.  She simply saw the cavernous hole that she’d never been able to stop up, to fill up, or to cover up. Then she’d seen clear through to something else entirely, something she couldn’t explain but wanted ravenously. The invitation fell into her open hands, and she said yes. And with her yes, the poignant hurt that had been sewn to her soul for all her years began to pull away at the seams. Night was retreating — in centimeters for now, but someday it would crawl back all those miles, and she’d really be free.

It took a moment, and it would take her lifetime. But the important thing was that it had begun.

So she stood in the still air, heavy with the juices of what she knew now to be hope, and whispered the only words that meant something — that meant everything — to her…

Wash me clean.

Wash me clean.

Wash me clean.

Over and over she said the words. And as she opened her eyes and drew her arms in around herself, she tasted the rain.

In these days, barren fields will sprout trees.

Fourteen steps and she was to her car. She didn’t turn around or glance back. She ducked in, turned the key, and licked her lips.

The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain.

Longfellow wrote those words, and yet, her whole life she’d tried to keep the clouds from releasing rain. She’d built a dam for her tears, and fed herself on the stale remedies of a rainless world. And she’d been dry because of it — awfully, unbearably dry.

She trembled a moment, then drove forward… into life, into hope, into the rain.

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