Falling in love for the first time



This is the second chapter in a series called, “Growing Wings to Love,” an exploration of a young woman developing the capacity to love deeply. Enjoy! And may there be great blessing for your own journey of love!

Angie walked into English class and there was a young woman sitting at the front behind Mrs. Feldman. She had bold eyes and Angie was mesmerized. Mrs. Feldman greeted the class and announced we would have a student teacher this term, Ms. Faust who was studying to be a teacher at the University of Colorado.

Ms. Faust stood up, said hello and how excited she was to be there. She proceeded into the lesson about the next book they would study, Adam Bede. The way Ms. Faust spoke caused Angie’s hair to raise up on end from the top of her spine all the way to her forehead. She didn’t know what was happening – she felt on fire.

Throughout the week Angie soaked herself in the torrential passion and anguish of Hetty Sorrel in the novel. She felt Hetty and Adam and Arthur and Dinah – there was a richness as she opened her heart to their story. To their lives. To the pain each felt and to the fullness of their moments of joy.

And she could not get Ms. Faust out of her head. The feelings in Angie’s heart kept growing richer and fuller. She didn’t know what to do with all these feelings in her unaccustomed teenage body. She wondered if Ms. Faust was a lesbian.

There was a bottle of bubbles sitting on her table and she opened the window of her bedroom overlooking the back yard. With a breath full and gentle… she blew bubbles and they floated lazily in the air, slowly making their way to the ground two floors down.

That weekend she began her essay – knowing it would be read by Ms. Faust, and she put all the passion and fire she was feeling into writing each word of it. Her heart was bursting! It began…

This is a novel of passion and love that shakes the reader’s heart out of the deepest sleep. There is the pain of love held back, lovers parting, secrets, fragile life exposed to the elements so that it dies, heartache, despair and redemption. Hetty’s trials not only speak of our own painful longing for unattainable love, but also to our ability to let life crack us open to show the red beating heart within our breast.

Tuesday morning, exhausted and nervous, Angie placed her finished essay on the pile of essays in front of Ms. Faust. Ms. Faust caught her eye in an unexpected deep way and her sensuous lips reached up into her right cheek in a playful half smile. Angie looked down and could feel her face suddenly hot as she went to her seat.

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The first tear drop



This is the first chapter in a series called, “Growing Wings to Love,” an exploration of a young woman developing the capacity to love deeply. Enjoy! And may there be great blessing for your own journey of love!

 

This day began as any other, and yet this day would change Angie at the deepest level. She arrived at school and sat down at her desk. Her parents were Buddhist and had put her in a Buddhist private school because she had been acting out and getting involved with “bad” kids in the couple of years before.

Her teacher came into the room with a somber look on her face and said, “A woman has died in the community. When we go in for our morning meditation, her body is in the shrine room. If you don’t want to go in, you don’t have to. We just wanted to let you know.”

Everyone went in to sit, and Angie thought she would give it a try. She settled on her cushion, aware of the coffin that was to the left of the shrine. The gong sounded three times, and she settled into finding her breath. She felt very aware, like there was something pressing on her awareness – something pressing on her heart. There was both a tightness and a fullness within her being as she felt her breath going out and then back in.

Who was this woman? How had she died? [thinking] back to the breath… What does she look like? I smell something… Is that her body decaying? What is that smell? [thinking] back to the breath… I feel really claustrophobic. I wish I hadn’t come in to meditate this morning with this body. Why would the teachers put us through this? [thinking] back to the breath… Breath going out, breath coming in. Settling a little with this profound silence, being with the presence of death.

Death is terrifying. Is it really going to happen to me? Yes, it is going to happen to me. And to everyone I know. That is so scary! Can I handle it? [thinking] back to the breath. Breathing gently, being really gentle with my heart as I walk through this experience. The sharpness of this moment, and being present with my breath. Being exquisitely present with my breath, awkwardly present, painfully present – all at once.

Time slows down, and I’m just being here. Being here with this body. Being here with my fear. Being with my breathing, out and in.

After an eternity, the gong rings. Angie is slow to move after this deep experience – almost afraid to move. But she does, and she follows the others back to the classroom. When she is riding the bus home, a woman drops her bag of groceries. A package of cookies opens and cookies spill out all over the floor of the bus. Angie’s eyes swell and tears come pouring out, and she cannot stop them.

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