Within the last week and a half I have had a hardcore reminder that this is a world of dualities, kind of like a 'black & white' cookie.
Nearly two weeks ago I almost lost one of my oldest and dearest friends. This was a girl I met by chance on September 10, 1987, my first day of college. My parents had delivered me to my dorm, The Hospitality Center, on Narragansett Boulevard in Cranston, Rhode Island, lower lobby room 19. We unloaded the car, unpacked it all and waited for at least one of my roommates to show up. We waited and waited. While all of the other kids were making friends right away, I was sitting on my bunk bed all alone. My parents were getting itchy to leave when they walked in; identical twins from Mahwah, NJ. Can you fucking believe my luck.....
Well it was pretty clear within the first five minutes that I was the odd girl out. While they teased their hair and put on more make up, I headed off to discover my dorm and try to find the cafeteria. My first attempt seemed logical; take the elevator to the basement. That basically delivered me to what looked like the gates of hell. Back up I went to try the stairs at the other end of the hall. I opened the door and there were about 5 girls coming down from the second floor who immediately scooped me up. It was a sigh of relief I still feel to this day. These women became my fast friends, roommates, bridesmaids, sisters.
These memories have been flooding back this past week as I have been keeping our college friends up to date with our dear friend who is extremely ill. I have spent quite some time in the hospital with her, just holding space. I can't offer more than my love and hopefully that's enough. I love this woman. We have things in common that I can't quite share with my newer group of friends. We are die hard Yankee fans. We can recite basically any Seinfeld episode, word for word. And we share a 24 year history. It's wonderful. She makes me laugh til I'm in tears, a rare gift. Even yesterday in the hospital we were laughing so hard that we were both crying as she regaled me with stories from the hospital and her midnight male nurse who apparently is Taye Diggs' twin brother.....
Although she is healing and can start to laugh again, the hospital sucks. I hate being there as I know she does too. It's icky and I leave there feeling drained of my prana as if the death and dying surrounds me and tries to hold on to whatever life I've got. I come home and shower. I'll be glad when she's out.
But also twice within the last week I have come home from the hospital, showered changed (into what feels like a completely different person) and gone out with my newer group of friends. We must look like a 'Sex and the City' scene. We're dolled up and dressed to the nines. We're drinking martinis and talking about sex and clothes. It's fun and I feel alive, really alive. We don't have a life long friendship yet, but we're starting one. Building memories, brick by brick.
It's a complete contrast to how I have spent my days recently. There were moments during my nights out where I felt guilty about living as my dear friend lay near death. How can I even think about having cocktails and which dress to wear with what heels while she's in a johnny coat? During one of these girls nights out, as we were listening to a new friend from Helsinki play piano and sing us into a dreamland, I was consumed by the duality of it all. Here, there. Life, death.
Are my worlds are colliding?
Will hospital Kristina kill Sex and the City Kristina?
I won't let her because I finally understand the truth that there isn't a world at all. Duality is just an insane idea that we like to buy into. It's part of the grand illusion. You can exist in each of your perceived worlds at once and feel alive in all of them. It's all love, just in different forms.
And as usual it always goes back to balance. The trick though is to 'look to the cookie'.
The key is to get a little bit of each world in every bite and all of our problems will be solved.