The following resonated with me:
“Last night, before my arraignment, I started shaking. Not shivering, but the palsied kind of seizure that even made the guards bring me to the infirmary for a free nurse’s check, not that she could find anything wrong. It was the sort of tremor that astronauts get when they come back to earth, that a hiker suffers after coming back down from Kilimanjaro—a bone-deep chill that has nothing to do with cold and everything with being moved from one world to another.”
– from Vanishing Acts by Jodi Picoult
I can’t say I’ve encountered a “palsied kind of seizure” but my kneecaps have trembled to the point they’ve threatened to pop off. I’ve shuttered with utter joy, overwhelming confusion, deep pain and indescribable elation. And I believe during each of these life defining moments I did move from one understood world to another.
Here is an abbreviated list of times I shook—
13 Parents sit me down in the living room (we hardly ever go in there) to tell me my older sister has a cancerous brain tumor.
15 My first kiss. I was a loony mess.
15 (weeks later) I find a newfound freedom in a relationship with Christ.
22 I survive a terrifying car accident. Picture…blindsided, hit gravel, jump gulley, airbag smacks me back, play blind Frogger with three lanes of oncoming traffic, wind up perfectly parallel facing oncoming traffic in their shoulder lane. Unharmed.
22 Fiancé informs me his territory will be in Seattle. My parents are in Florida. Can you say leave and cleave?
23 Undergo major surgery one month prior to wedding.
26 Baby born
28 Baby born
*I’ve experienced other intimate and/or life defining times, but I’ve opted not to disclose them for various reasons.
Congratulations to Sarah who wrote In the Eye of Deception! You win Thin Places. Your memoir sounds fascinating. Thanks to all those who participated! I was informed making the decision was grueling. Sarah, please send me your address (email found on Facebook badge down to the right).
Do you remember a moment when you shook?
*photos by flickr