Forgiveness on the Mountain

This poignant reflection was written by a friend of mine who chooses to remain anonymous. Her story is so beautiful, I feel compelled to share it with you this week. Here is a tale of how one woman found a way to release the past.

It was January and surprisingly warm in the mountains for this time of the year.  But the air was still cool enough to make her gasp each time she pulled in a breath.  And though it hasn’t snowed in weeks there were still patches of white frozen in place.  There she sat, at the top of the hill where the wise woman had sent her to talk to Father Wind.  To seek his forgiveness and her own, to let him cleanse her of her sins.

There were two, she admitted to very few.   Two times she was stupid.  Two times she sought to clear herself of the responsibility.  And though she could rationalize the reasons, that didn’t stop the guilt nor the grief at what she’d done.  And so on this beautiful blue morning she sat on a boulder, all alone.  With only the wind calling out from the trees.

And she let herself sink down, into the past.

To a time when she was 19, in love with her first partner.  So grateful to have him, so overcome by the sensations of her body, the freedom she felt in letting herself go in the moment.  She gave in to her desire, to her lust, to her need for him.  She let herself believe it was safe, and she took him inside of her – hot and pulsing, and hers. 

And so, she could find forgiveness for the first.  For being young and naive and in love.  In need of him.  But he had no interest in being a father, and so she gave in.

The second time she held him in her arms.  This time she let herself believe it would be safe if he pulled out and released his seed beyond.  Her love for him, need for him, had only intensified over the years.  How he would beg her to let him be inside of her with no barrier.  To feel her heat, her wetness, her desire for him.  He wore her down, and so she let him. 

For a brief time, it was perfection.  He loved her, his hot breath on her neck, his thrusting filling the longing inside of her.  In his arms, she was desired, beautiful, his.  She was swept up, tossed about, before landing back down as he pulled out and she felt the warm fluid pulse on her belly. 

And so for a second time, she lay on the doctor’s table, looking up at a ceiling with a poster of a forest. Legs splayed, belly cramping, brain cringing as they sucked out blood, and tissue.

So  up on that mountain she sat that afternoon, as warm tears streamed down her face.  And she let them go one at a time.  Let the wind gather up their sweet spirits.  Spirits that had hovered around her all those years because she could not let them go. 

Deep in the pine forest that afternoon, the wind surrounded her, caressed her cheek, as she called out to it.  Called out to it to carry them carefully away, to let them find their peace here in the mountains.  And as the wind grew in strength and power, she called to it again. Swirling now, whipping at her face, cooling the hot tears, filling her lungs and pores with its cleansing. 

And the ones she would never hold in her arms were slowly released from her soul.

One by one, they opened their arms as the wind eased them out into the wilderness. Drifting further and further away.  Free.  At peace.

She sat there for a while longer after the wind had stilled, breathing in the cold air.  Deep full breaths that filled her lungs. 

And for the first time in so many years, she felt a little lighter.  She had found her way to forgiveness.  Up there, on the mountain top that afternoon, she had set them, and herself, free.


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