Peace isn't a permanent state. It exists in moments. Fleeting. Gone before we even knew it was there. Everyday we experience these moments of peace. The trick is to know when they're happening so we can embrace them, live in them.
- Grey's Anatomy, "Give Peace a Chance"
I have thought a lot about how to find peace over the last year, wanting it to be a state of being. I am sure for some Buddhist monks, peace is their normal state of being. But I am not a Buddhist monk nor am I able to maintain peace through chaos.
I am also not so naive as to believe that, at 27, I have "done my time," that this is my trauma and that I get a bye to live without chaos and sadness for the remainder of my life. Knowing what I know about unexpected moments of inexplicable grief, I believe though that I must be able to find peace, even in those moments. Peace IS fleeting. But so too is grief.
Where I found grief in sorting through the ashes of my belongings, so too did I find peace in the arms of strangers. I found laughter in the irony of that which was recognizable and tried to limit my tears for that which was not. I found peace in watching the nailing of boards, the piecing back together of my house, my life. Even if that peace was interrupted by the cries of a newborn child or the questions of another contractor, there was peace in *that* moment. There was peace the night that Dan and I sat in our house for the first time, furniture-less eating take-out because our home was not yet ours, but it was. There have been moments of peace in being able to write about our journey, peace in recognizing that it is a journey, one with no set endpoint. And there is peace dancing among the grief in the realization that on August 25, our lives changed forever and that we will never be able to go back to "before."
I find peace now, watching the leaves fall from trees I didn't have before, and with each fall of the leaf, the closing of one season and the welcoming of another. It is a new season for us too. Not one in which there is lack, but one in which there is peace. There always was peace. It was just recognizing it amidst the grief.