The Dance of Light and Dark

Entry #16.6 / 2nd July 2022

For twenty minutes, I wandered within the memorial, exploring and absorbing it’s beauty. Engraved inscriptions adorned the walls, each one capturing my attention as I lingered over them, feeling a sense of significance was over me. I also recorded footage of the surroundings, fully aware that no camera could truly encapsulate the emotions stirring within me.

                  Eventually, once I got out of my awe-daze, I found Janette and Ryan just outside the entryway of the memorial.

                  “Hey.” I said with a light voice.

                  Janette first looked up, as they were both sat down on the top of the steps of the memorial. “You good?”

                  I nodded, about to say something when a sudden clap of thunder, louder than before, echoed through the sky. Moments later, rain began to shatter down, eliciting protests from some of the people on the lower parts of the staircase.

                  “Well,” Ryan began as he leaned back on his palms, taking in the weather changes. “I guess we arrived here at the right time.

                  Silence washed over us three as I took a seat next to Janette. Watching the rain take over the landscape.

                  Gradually, the rain intensified into a full-fledged storm, and as the first flash of lightning struck just behind the Washington Monument in the distance, the entire world seemed to pause.

                  The screaming and rushing crowds had vanished. The chatter of people within the memorial faded into silence. Janette and Ryan were no longer seated beside me. It was just the wind caressing my hair away, the rain drumming against my legs, and the comforting rumble of thunder accompanying the flashes of lightning.

                  My heart was no longer hammering – no longer beating. Mind completely still. And breathing was non-existent.

                  It was nothing. Just nothing but the rain, wind, thunder and lightning. Nothing else in this world. Nothing else existed.

                  There was nothing.

                  And then there was everything.

                  You know that stupid saying that is told to people about dying – how your whole life flashes before your eyes? Yeah, I never believed that shit either.

                  But that was what was happening now.

                  First, it was just the calming tones of the storm, and then memories whiplashed through my eyes.

                  Of course, taking the lead was the dark ones.

                  Memories of Joy. The family. Parts of my school life. The tears. The anguish. The despair. The soul-breaking and heart-stopping pit of engulfing loneliness. The dark fog that never seemed to break.

                  But it did break.

                  Memories, good, the light and, true memories flooded in.

                  The first story I wrote. My first childhood best friend. My first kiss. The theme parks that my Dad would take me to. My times playing around the brooke. My writing times within the Learning Disability area at school. My years with friends at college. Moving to Newport and Cardiff. Meeting Zara. My first graduation. Moving to York – my first proper home. Meeting Jonsey, Mitchy and Evan. My second graduation. Becoming more independent. My first solo travel to Amsterdam.

                  So many memories. The light and dark dancing alongside each other. So much in a millisecond.

                  “I don’t want you to miss out on anything.”

                  Mrs Connors’ words rang through me as the memories flashed away with the next bolt of lightning. And something felt… right.

                  Everything in my life, the bad and good, made sense in that moment. The lightning that was breaking the sky was mending my soul.

                  Because she was wrong.

                  I was wrong.

                  I’m not missing out on anything.

                  I never was.

                  It hit me with the next burst of thunder that I would’ve missed out. I would’ve missed out on this. Seeking shelter within the memorial, watching the beautiful quakes of a storm partying with the Washington Monument.

                  I would miss out on this pause. On the moment when it slowly making sense. I would’ve missed out on this breath-taking moment if I had followed the crowd.

                  And if I had missed out on this, I would’ve never come to this first breakaway thought.

                  I’m moving to Australia.

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