Afreen Shanavas | Participant 22

COMMUNION


We spoke less nowadays. Didn't feel the need to. Words felt superficial. Accessory, even.

It has been like that for quite a while. Silence became our only mode of communication—our sole solace in the dark.

After Jenna's first chemotherapy we grew more silent but we were closer than ever.

And I liked it. Mostly because I dreaded hearing the agony in her voice. But also, because we conversed better when we bared ourselves and let the other read. The silence was deafening—I could almost hear her thoughts pouring out of her like molten lava and her life draining out of ---I stopped myself. In my desperation, I forgot that she could read me too.

Jenna snapped out of the trance and sighed deeply.

With the connection severed, the silence was unbearable.

But neither of us could find the words to fill the void between us.

I was afraid. To say the words out loud. To give a voice to my fear and invite empowerment through acknowledgment.

Jenna groped for her walking stick and got to her feet.

Without a word, she headed to the seaside. I followed.

"Grace", Jenna whispered. "It's a beautiful day, isn't it?"

I nodded. The crimson red sun kissed the waters goodbye and sank into the sea while the first slivers of moonlight materialized in the sky welcoming yet another splendid night.

Jenna loved the night skies. Almost every day we ate supper outside our cottage, marveling at the vast blanket looming over us, a different hue of blue or black every other day.

A fresh tear escaped my eye. And then some more. Soon my eyes were overflowing with tears but I made no effort to conceal it. Because it no longer mattered. Jenna wasn't there---she was gone.

She was never there. Jenna Atkinson departed peacefully last night with her family by her side.

I knew I was lucky.

Too many people never get to say goodbye. Or even profess their love for each other.

Life is short. But it is also abrupt. If you love someone, come out of the closet, and tell them. Tell them now.

 

Written By : Afreen Shanavas

Instagram Handle : @avengersisawesome