First off I’d like to apologise for yet another long absence, this time brought about by a joyful visit from none other than sleeplessknight – another blogger on WordPress – mostly consisting of watching horror-movies in the hotel-room, trying mattresses at IKEA and being very cold a lot of the time , followed by a few days of work and a pain-in-the-a** cold which has me sneezing and snotting like no other. The cold is still very much present but I don’t really need to do anything tomorrow so maybe I’ll have time to get well now.
Anyway, as so often happens, a thought struck me as I was going about my regular business and doing something completely mundane. In this case walking home from the grocery-store. I looked down on the snow and saw my shadow, split in three. This little bubbly, hazy thought popped into my head. “Huh, funny how the absence of something, in this case light, can actually create something else, in this case the shadow.” At first the thought floated around in my head for a bit and I looked at it bemused, thinking how pretty it was. Then my brain stopped dead in its tracks. Yes.
The absence of something always creates something else! The absence of material creates a hole. The absence of air creates a vacuum! Needless to say, my brain kept going in these tracks, then swung right back around. The absence of materia creates a hole where that materia should be. Then maybe, just maybe it works the same way with people? That when someone say “I miss you so much it hurts” it actually does, because the absence of that person in their lives has created a gaping, person-shaped hole in the space of their brain where they keep that person, whenever it’s present?
By this definition, anti-matter could not exist. Because as soon as we give something a name, we turn it into something, and in order for something to not be anything, we need to not know about it, not be able to see it, to define it, to name it. Anything that we are aware of therefore is forced to exist, at least on our own level of consciousness.
Sorry, slightly off track there. Just got too exciting.
Anyway, let’s say that when a person isn’t in our lives anymore, whether we’re separated by death, distance or separating ourselves from one another, there’s a hole left. In the case of a break-up, the classical rebound boy/girlfriend is often applied, much like a band-aid. The band-aid is nothing like the wound itself but it does a good job covering it up and making us forget that it’s there at all. A funeral is much like an operation, where we go through a ritual to leave a part of us behind, and a marriage adds a part to us in a more constant manner. Oftentimes we try to replace the person we miss with other people, be it friends, lovers, substitutes for grandparents or pets, wherever we turn we try to find solace and someone who will make the previous hole heal, or appear to be filled.
Some people try to fill the hole with hobbies and new interests. Sometimes the hole is easier forgotten if we move to a new place and surround ourselves by new things. Some people literally eat to fill the hole, some drink themselves into oblivion. Very few people let the hole be there and just live with it as it is. Being humans, when something is incomplete or lacking, it bothers us, even on the subconscious level of a hole left in our souls by a person missing.
What would happen if we didn’t try to fill that hole, weren’t so dead set on making it heal or hiding it? If we just let the hole be what it is, an absence of someone, would that be so bad? People adapt to everything, they adapt to losing their sight, hearing, a limb, the ability to walk, so then why not to losing someone who we are so strongly attached to? True, in the cases of losing ones senses and limbs, we often find replacements, something not quite as good as the original thing but sufficient enough that we can get by without it. But if we just let the hole be there, if we accept it as an absence of person, then maybe, after days, months, years, we’ll find something else in its place. Be it vacuum, cavity, silence or blank, the hole will eventually turn into something else, if we only look at it long enough and accept it for what it is.
Who knows, one day that hole just might become a shadow, the shadow left of the light that was cast upon the person who once stood in it, and in that shadow we may find peace.