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176_Chapter Four – Day 20 part one

I struggled for a few hours in the middle of the night, but I do not recall what was occurring. Overall I slept very well, and I am feeling more rested today. I went outside when I woke today and experienced the storm blowing in. The air is both warm and cold and blusters in every direction. It is fantastically energetic. 

As I come to the cabin, I see myself outside, as well. The light is the same, but there was no wind here. It is still early morning, and everything around me is varying shades of gray. The sadness has not left me, but it is deep and not focused on anything in particular. It does feel a bit hopeless, like there is no chance for me to heal and like he will be with me forever, but I think this is his thought, not mine. Above it, closer to the surface of my emotion, I am feeling hopeful. I feel like today; we can start making a plan. 

I sit in a chair, just outside of the door, wrapped in an oversized comforter, with a cup of warm coffee in my hands. It is cool here this morning but not particularly cold. It will be a moderately warm day. I am here alone, for now, enjoying the quiet of the forest. I know IEO and Amber are in the cabin, and I know IEO will soon join me, so we can start discussing what to do next, but I am not sure about Amber. I hope she will come, but I don’t know the rules today, so it may not be so.

When IEO comes out, he sits in the chair next to me. He doesn’t say anything. He just holds my hand and gazes with me to where Patrick is grazing. The trees beyond it are quiet, except for the birds. The animals were up and visiting the meadow some time ago. I enjoyed watching for a while, but they are now gone into the woods and about their business. I hear water in the distance. There is a river and maybe a waterfall. It is a constant, comforting sound. So, we just sit there for several minutes, enjoying the space’s energy and each other.

The sun rises with us just sitting here this way. Then, Amber comes out of the cabin and sits to my right. She is still wearing a summer dress but now has a cardigan over it. She is also wearing a light ballet slipper. I imagine it still feels like being barefoot. I notice how what she wears is in sharp contrast to my jeans and giant sweater. I think of her as so much more feminine than I am, but as I look closer, my jeans are snug fit and flattering. I am thinner here. I am also wearing a t-shirt which is complimentary to my ‘better body.’ I’m embarrassed by noticing these things about myself, but I’ll allow it. When you feel unworthy, it’s good to grab hold of the little things. Besides, I know I could wear just jeans and a t-shirt and still look feminine. The sweater drowns me, but it is IEO’s, and it is warm and comforting and saturated in the safety I need.

IEO is different here as well. He is not as tall as he presents himself as a Spirit Guide. He is still well over 6 feet but is a bit more relative to us. I note our appearance primarily for myself because I know they are essential to my overall healing. I am working so hard on how I present in the world, and I look at all of the women in Amber’s family and wish I could even be close to their kind of femininity. They are so graceful and gentle and beautiful. I feel like they are the exact opposite of me, but here, I am closer to what I want. The hard edge is gone. I am quieter and more feminine. The only masculine edge to my appearance is the sweater, and it belongs to a man, so this is massive growth for me. Though I am afraid to invest in the feeling, I still hope to see if this personal development shows itself in my life as well.

Amber does not say anything or even look at me. She just sits with her head down and a cup in her hands. Her pose is not submissive by any means. She is very focused and emits a strong core. I can see she is purposefully avoiding eye contact. As we began to plan, I noticed she was not speaking either. She would communicate with IEO, but not with me. 

It is obvious she doesn’t want him to recognize her, and if she looks at me, he might. I imagine her presence here is a big enough risk, and we must take every precaution to ensure she is not detected. So, I am careful to face IEO with my back slightly to her.

IEO turns to me, and he speaks, “You begin your walk today, and you will not turn back until your journey is done. We must be cautious as we walk this path. The way is not clear. You will be guided and protected, but we must show you only one step at a time. WE will lay the path before you, but you will not know your true direction. You must trust in the Great Spirit and follow His plan. Do not question His decisions. You will feel fear, and you will doubt the direction of the Great Spirit, but you must throw your doubt to the wolves. They will take your worries and give you their strength. 

“I will be with you in your journey, but your eyes will not always see me. Your ears will not hear me. Still, if you are honest, you will know I am there. Are you ready?”

“Yes, IEO. I am ready.” I know I am.

Even as I say the words, I realize I am scared, and suddenly I feel small. I recall early this morning, during my restlessness, I realized the enormity of this situation. I have always been so casual with the paranormal. I have been nonchalant when facing demons and extremely casual about unfriendlies in general. Now, I am painfully aware of the truth. A woman has lost her life at the hands of this man, as have many before her, and as she sat next to me today, she was not casual or even unconcerned. She was careful and very serious. She knows him and her actions alone tell me how grave a situation it is.

Even IEO’s message is another ‘wake-up call.’ I seldom doubt their guidance. Sometimes I wonder what they could want, but I generally do as they ask. I know I can be rebellious, but I realize now is the time I must listen carefully, and I must follow each step as they give it to me. For the first time in my life, I doubt my abilities. I fear failure. At this point, all I can do is I hope this is him talking and not me.

We all stand, and I turn to IEO. He holds me while Amber gently strokes my back as she passes and goes into the cabin. His touch is comforting and soothing, but I still don’t want to leave IEO’s arms. I don’t want to let go. 

It is some time before I cast aside my doubt and pull away. I look into his face once more. I know I will not see those chiseled lines for some time, and sadness overwhelms my fear.

He holds my head in his great hands and says, “Before anything, you must not forget. I will be by your side. If you can find the place where truth is, you will feel me.” With this, he leans forward and kisses my forehead. He wraps himself around me one more time, and then he turns and walks into the cabin.

I turn to leave. I don’t believe I have ever felt this vulnerable in my life. I’m sure this is what it was like for me as a small child, in memories that are blackness to me now. At this moment, my journey has become very real.

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