I think I might just lose my lunch…

I hate rollercoasters. There is nothing quite as stomach-churning as the horrendous pendulum that swings between terrified and adrenaline-charged when you ride on them. It’s too much for me—I can’t do it.

This week has been a rollercoaster ride.

It begins as a series of surreal minutes during which you take your seat in a small pod that will take you where you’ve not been before. The dull clunk of the safety rail as it slides into place. Disbelief that in a few seconds you will be travelling at high speed, mid-air, unprotected. The slow grinding of gears as the engine starts and the jolting thud of the gears connecting beneath you.

The carriage springs to life and thrusts you forward, your mind struggling to catch up with a body hurtling ahead. You click your way upwards in a slow climb, the calm before the storm. It does not last long before the terrifying plunge into grief. You catch your breath for a moment with a numbing coast through the middle-ground busyness of real life before the upward chugging anger of betrayal. A blind corner question—a thought you’ve not had before—and you’re thrown upside down and screaming through another downward spiral. You gasp and pant as the new thought finds its place in one of the carriages you drag behind you, a long chain of cars that chug up and down the hills and valleys of this incomprehensible reality. The thoughts are not strapped in but bump into one another, climbing frequently between the carriages, connecting unpleasantly with each other to interpret old thoughts in new ways. They scream and whimper—each in its own way—until you do not know which came first. They are your badly behaved passengers that will neither settle, nor obey your command.

When you think you can stand no more, the ride slows and you rattle into the station, your hair windswept and tangled. Salty rivulets in dry pathways mark your face and your voice is hoarse with screaming.  You are grateful that you are mere seconds from the end, but the carriage does not stop, it merely slows, clunks and begins to move forward for another terrifying whirl though the air.

This week has been exhausting. I fall into bed so tired I could cry, and lie awake for ages trying to compel myself to sleep, trying to kick out the thoughts that have followed me into bed. I wake in the morning to find they have crawled in beside me and wait to be picked up again. They are heavy thoughts, and tiring to carry. I try to find things for them to do so that they will leave me alone. They are like toddlers that demand constant attention, and I cannot ignore them for long. One thing alone keeps them at bay…my singing…they cover their ears and hide under the blankets. There’s not much to sing about at the moment, so I sing about someone…someone I love…someone bigger and more capable than me, and the thoughts lie down and stay quiet. Sometimes they go to sleep.

My singing is atrocious, but if it is this potent…I might just quit my day job.




The sun streams in the window. It is morning just as it has been every morning my entire life long…and yet it is not. The innocent moment of blissful forgetfulness is fleeting as the crushing weight of what has happened finds its place on my waking shoulders. I rise and shake them in preparation for a day that is like every other, even though it isn’t. I zombie walk through routines that seem banal in the aftermath, but who am I to feel this way? I am not Judas’ Jesus, just one of the eleven too stunned to understand the betrayer’s kiss. I keep moving because necessity compels me to.

It works for an hour of mind-consuming task. Ask me then and I will tell you: I feel fine. One thought later and I will say: This isn’t really happening to us. I convince myself there must be some mistake, some mis-remembered fact that will prove, in time, to have been a terrible misunderstanding. I have known this person for most of my life. This is out of character.

How could I have been so wrong?

But there has been no mistake— his words tell me so. Confession, not rumour. Confession after denial, after denial, after denial, after denial, after denial. Confession. Freely given. I am thankful for that. A confession is a gift.

And how can I deny what he has confessed with his own mouth?

It makes me angry. I have a thousand questions that beg for answers:When? Where? Why? How? Why? How? Why? One confession—a thousand unanswered questions—and anger, anger that makes me cry. I wish there was someone to blame, some scapegoat to be sent into the wilderness with all this pent up fury and grief and sadness and turmoil on his bovid head. But there is nothing I can do. No. thing. to. do. but grieve.

They say that movement from denial to anger is progress…and it is enough progress for today. I will retire now to sleep a restless sleep, to dream of broken pieces and bleeding wounds—dreams more vivid than the straying focus and too-short concentration that plague my daylight hours—while my stomach rumbles, not from food it cannot digest, but a truth that it will not.