fiction

The Transformation Of Amy Lunaro: Chapter Twenty One. {fiction}

Through the window she watched Doctor Weaver’s truck drive right over the snow and park in front of the house.

She heard the door swing open and a whoosh of wind enter before him, then Leanne taking his coat and offering him tea in a voice even shorter and snappier than usual.

Amy cringed a little for the Doctor, she sure knew what Leanne’s cold fronts felt like, they were so frosty your teeth chattered. That was her joke with Leanne when she got tough, Amy would say, “Hmm, seems like a cold front coming in, pass me my sweater?”

But in two months of invalidism, she had grown to feel an intense compassion and understanding for Leanne. She knew Leanne didn’t even like to be so hard around the edges, as she herself called it, but she had built up a wall of armor over years of doing battle with a lifetime of loss.

But Leanne never liked being too tough. “No one actually likes being a shitty monster,” she said. “It’s just my ego defending my wounds. The only thing that really feels good is when love is in charge, not fear.”

Still, all her life’s adversity had brought her much wisdom, which Amy soaked up like a sponge. Leanne liked to say that the world had cracked her hard enough to let a fuckload of light in.

Amy waited for the doctor in the bedroom, in her tan cashmere sweater and light blue nightgown which James had bought her for their honeymoon. She hadn’t been able to take it off; it was a symbol of their innocence, of his mad romantic love for her, he had bought it in London before sweeping home to marry her.

Leanne had told her how unhealthy it was, to wear something that symbolized something dead. She called stories about James ghost stories.

“Why you telling me ghost stories?” she’d ask when Amy would tell an anecdote about James. “Why you bringing up the dead?” Leanne was careful to toss dead flowers and quickly fix things which broke around the house, like the kitchen chair that split when she had landed in it too heavily in the middle of a particularly dramatic story.

“Don’t want nothin’ with dead or broken energy in this house, especially when you’re trying to heal, and start a new life,” Leanne had said. “What I want to know is what is happening now. That’s the question a gal’s always gotta be asking herself in order to get present and take care of business.

Otherwise you’re floating around in the past or future, and neither of those exists. Don’t muddle over the past, darling, and don’t you dare believe in the future. Ask yourself: What. Is. Happening. Now. Otherwise, you’ll miss your whole life.”

But Amy still wouldn’t take the soft silk blue nightgown off.

Before the doctor had come, Amy had brushed her hair in a small hand mirror, but other than that she hadn’t done a thing. She was in this new place of not trying, of being enough as she was. She was starting to realize that trying had never worked.

And besides, she didn’t really feel there was anything she could do to feel attractive for the handsome doctor.

It was hard to feel desirable with two splayed out plaster legs, despite them being draped with a light lavender blanket.

Maybe it was simply because she had to, but Amy was finding herself letting a lot of things go.

Leanne had told her, “Fear holds on. Love lets go.”

And Amy was letting go of things she had clutched tightly her whole life. Her obsession with looks and how others saw her. She was even starting to see beneath others’ shells as well; she wasn’t so focused on their outsides, but their insides — if they meant and did what they said. If they cared about something bigger than themselves.

“Remember, with this Doctor Weaver character,” Leanne had said after Amy had brought him up again, “all that glitters ain’t gold.”

She barely looked in a mirror, and beauty was becoming a different definition to her, one she had never thought of in her prior world of materialism and cool. She and Leanne talked about what true beauty was. “This culture just strives for a beautiful body,” Leanne had said, shaking her head.

“What about a beautiful mind? What about a beautiful soul?” she said. “The body goes. The mind and soul, you’re stuck with that.” She hadn’t read a magazine in months, the TV was way out in the living room and she could only listen faintly to the dialogue of Leanne’s shows.

She’d been reading real books, books on mystic poetry and consciousness and evolution, on the Goddess and the feminine and having real, intimate conversations with Leanne. She was feeling like she and Leanne had more of an intimate relationship than she ever did with James.

Leanne didn’t storm out of the room and go drink when Amy made her mad, and Amy couldn’t storm out of a room and go drink when Leanne made her mad. They both stayed. Neither of them stormed away from the storm; the storm eventually passed, and their anger turned to softness, and even laughter.

And after each storm, somehow they knew themselves and each other better.

Everything about her was softening in this cocoon of plaster she was in, and Leanne had even explained to her that that was exactly what she was doing, was cocooning.

Leanne told Amy that she was perfectly aligned with the seasons of the earth, to cocoon up and metaphysically die in winter, along with all of nature.

And Amy felt quadruple-cocooned really, by the cast, the cabin she hadn’t left in eight weeks, the thick blanket of snow on the ground, and the island which seemed to hold her apart from the world, deep in the sea like a womb.

Beneath all these layers, her old self felt like it was dying and a new one forming, and all Amy could do was be patient with the process.

“It’s almost like you’ve been mummified like some Egyptian priestess for rebirth,” Leanne said, giving her left cast a little knock with a fist.

The doctor declined the tea, he seemed anxious to just see Amy.

“Our girl’s in the back,” Leanne told him. Amy’s heart beat a little as he entered the door. He had a light dusting of snow in his hair and he wasn’t wearing his glasses. He seemed more nervous than the last time they saw each other. He checked her vitals quickly, then asked about her emotional health.

“I have the best nurse around,” Amy said, nodding to Leanne in the doorway.

He told her she had about one month left in the casts, and then he cleared his throat as he removed the lavender blanket, absentmindedly running his hands over his handiwork. “So,” he said, “Amy, I was wondering about something.”

“Yes?” Amy asked, feeling her cheeks burn hot.

“Jimmy Jackson’s playing in Portland next week, and…”

Her heart fell. She knew this way too well. She was so used to this scenario — people using her to get close to Jimmy..

“I, I wouldn’t have any way of talking to him,” she said. James hadn’t returned a text in three months. It seemed he hoped she would just disappear. He wouldn’t even know if she was dead.

The doctor’s eyes went dark. “That’s too bad, my girlfriend and I were hoping to go.”

“I’m sorry,” Amy said, staying stoic as to not to reveal her disappointment, “I can’t help you.”

Leanne stepped into the room.

“Well, Doc, guess we should let the patient get some rest.”

He wasn’t so kind when he left, as if there wasn’t much Amy could do for him. Her eyes watered after she heard the door shut, and Leanne sat down on the side of the bed. “Honey,” she said, petting her knee, “it’s good when there are no men left to dream of in your heart.

It’s when you finally turn into the reality of you and learn to love her, warts and all. Abandon these fantasies of men. Abandon these fantasies of men. Turn all that energy back towards you and becoming a woman you love.

You’re stuck with you for the rest of your life, and it’s time to love the hell out of yourself. When you can do that, I swear, the right love will come. But you can’t look for it. You have to let it find you.”

Amy let herself cry a little. “I know, Leanne,” she said, “he just reopened that wound.”

“For years people were nice to me because they could get to Jimmy,” she said. “I feel like I was only worth something because I was Jimmy’s wife.” She wiped a tear away and inhaled deeply.

“Baby, you have so much more to offer than being someone’s wife. And sometimes, people have to leave us so we can find ourselves.” Leanne nodded at Amy’s laptop, then pressed her hand into Amy’s  heart.

“Sometimes I think he’s just going to walk back in the door and say ‘just kidding’.”

With that, Leanne reached over to Amy and pulled the sweater from off of her.

“What are you doing?” Amy asked.

Leanne wasn’t done. She then lifted Amy’s hips and jerked the blue nightgown up and off them, then hoisted it over Amy’s head. She bustled out of the bedroom, then out of the cabin front door.

Amy saw her trodding out in the snow in front of the bedroom window.

Her mane of white hair whipped in the wind and she held up the blue nightgown like a flag, and seemed to be mumbling some sort of ritual.

Then Amy watched Leanne hold a lighter underneath the gown and set it aflame. Amy just watched the show silently from bed as the flames crept up the dress and then engulfed it completely. The hot flickering orange was brilliant against the blanket of white. Amy sat there naked, watching this wild woman burn the last material piece of her old life, up in flames.

There was now literally nothing of it to hold on to. There was nothing Amy was holding on to any more at all. In fact, instead of holding on, Amy felt held. By Leanne, this bed, by this island that cradled her in the sea, and this new force she could feel within her, that always seemed to be right there when she needed it.

She leaned back into the bed, into that silent presence within her, and closed her eyes, with a small, peaceful smile on her face.

This is an ongoing series from a forthcoming fiction novel by Sarah Durham Wilson of DOITGIRL.
Tune in weekly for the next chapter in ‘The Transformation of Amy Lunaro’.

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Sarah Durham Wilson
Sarah Durham Wilson is a woman in the world who writes about being a woman in the world. She teaches workshops, courses, and retreats on awakening to one’s inner Divine Feminine nature. You can find her on Facebook and her blog.
Sarah Durham Wilson