On Saturday, we hiked up a mountain in search of a waterfall. When we arrived at the top of the mountain, there was no water in the fall.

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(See that last pond all the way to the right? That’s where the falls are supposed to be cascading over the edge to the valley floor.)

So instead of sitting by a rushing river to eat our lunch, we sat on a rock by a puddle. A picturesque puddle, granted, but a puddle nonetheless.

While exploring the mostly dry bed of these grand falls, I discovered that the rock still bears the marks of the river. Huge whorls and deep pools of stone, perfectly circular, with no trace of the water that shaped them.

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Climbing around these holes carved in the solid granite, they started to remind me of what it’s like to lose someone you love. After spending so long with a person, little by little your heart starts to take on the shape of their presence in your life. They flow over and around you so many times that they mold you, chip away at you, smooth down your edges, until you can’t really tell where you end and they begin.

And then, they are gone. Your heart still bears the shape of them, but the force that created it is no longer there. What then? One becomes like this waterfall – still beautiful, still a testament to that person’s presence in your life, but kind of sad and really, really empty.

But then again, maybe I was just dehydrated.

 

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