“I missed you.” It was a spring afternoon when I finally went to see her. She sat on a blanket in the sun-dappled field, surrounded by wildflowers and stalks of wheat. She spoke as soon as she saw me. “I really did. I’ve been here everyday, waiting for you, Winter. But you never showed up.” I turned my eyes away. It had been too long since I had visited this place. I examined a nearby wildflower–purple petals with streaks of pink. “I wouldn’t have judged you, you know. ” I looked back up. Clear green eyes stared back at me, their gaze calm, non-judgmental. I relaxed slightly as she patted the ground beside her. “I never judge.” She spoke slowly, emphatically. “But I do feel kind of lonely.”
“I know.” I responded as I took a seat beside her. “Things just got busy. I’m so tired, so tired at night when everything is done. You understand.” It was true. Life had gotten hard lately, every second filled with something, with nothing left over. “I’ve been through some challenging times, and my mind has been too chaotic. You wouldn’t have wanted to see me. I haven’t been the best version of my self lately. ”
She laughed, and the sound was rough, too rough for her. I pulled back, surprised. “Why would you say that, Winter? You know that isn’t true. It’s the times that things are the hardest that you should come and see me even more.” She shrugged. “But you know that already. You know how important it is, how much you need this time.”
I prepared to open my mouth and protest, but shut it again immediately. After a short pause I answered. “I know. ” She smiled. We sat in silence for several minutes. In the distance I heard the faint call of voices, thin but growing stronger.
She motioned towards the voices with her head. “Go back to them.”
I stood up. “I’m sorry I couldn’t stay long. Next time will be longer.”
She smiled. “It doesn’t matter how long you stay, just that you show up. When you write, even just a little, it heals your soul. Don’t neglect it.”
The voices were booming now. I nodded. “I won’t.” I turned to walk away, away from the meadow of thoughts and reflection. Away from the words typed on the screen.
“Winter!” I turned back around. She looked at me earnestly. “Come back to see me, promise?”
I nodded. “Goodbye Calliope. I’ll be back very soon.” And this time, I meant it.