to·pog·ra·phy noun \tə-ˈpä-grə-fē\
: the art or science of making maps that show the height, shape, etc., of the land in a particular area
: the features (such as mountains and rivers) in an area of land
What would a map of me look like? Would my nose be a little hill to climb? Could my hair be a field of wheat you can cross? My love for Miranda might be a little bubbling spring that is cool and refreshing. My humor might be a dry desert. My need to hope could be a grove of always blooming trees. Is my turbulent relationship with my family a rocky mountain I cannot climb? My grief though….I know just what my grief is.
My grief is like a lake in the middle of my existence. At first I was in the middle of the lake drowning. Now I am on the shore of the lake circling around it. My walks around the lake get wider and wider, and I get new scenery because of it, but my eye is always on the lake. Someday my walk may be so wide that the lake goes out of view for a moment. There will never come a day though, when I don’t need to turn and look at the lake.
If anybody comes to visit me I want to point out the lake to them right away.
“Look at my beautiful lake.” I might say.
“But isn’t that the lake that caused you so much pain? Isn’t that the lake that almost drowned you.” They might reply.
“Yes, but I cannot ignore this lake. I must learn to appreciate the lake, because this lake is not going away. Will you not stay here with me for a moment so I can show you my lake?” I would say back. A good friend would then stroll around my lake with me. We don’t have to talk about the lake, but we must at least acknowledge the lake is there.
This lake is a permanent feature, just like the mountains or the bubbling spring. My internal compass points to the lake. Now you can see my problem when you ask me to move on. I cannot move on from this lake because it is a natural feature of this region. No matter where I move the lake will still be there.