Once upon a time there was a woman who could not forget. Her love had gone to war and not return, so she spent her days in sackcloth and ashes, mourning.
Whenever her friends came to comfort her, the woman would talk to them for hours about what a wonderful person he had been. For the first few years, they listened and cried with her. But after five years many told her it was time to move on.
At the first mention of moving on, the woman would fly into a rage and drive the friend from her house with blows and curses. After a few visits like this, the friends did not return. The woman now mourned the loss of those friends as well as her love with the few friends she had left.
Working was unthinkable for the mourning woman, so after time she lost her home to taxes and sold her things one by one to pay for food. Eventually she had nothing, and lived in the shed behind an old friend’s home. The friend had not told her to move on, but avoided spending time with her. No one wanted to hear the constant mourning.
One night the woman had a dream. In the dream her love returned to her, surrounded by all her friends. She was so angry at him for leaving that she screamed at him in the dream and drove him and all her friends from her shed. The next day she ran up to the house of her old friend and pounded on the door. When her friend opened the door, the woman told of her dream.
“What do you think it means?” asked her friend.
“It means he was no good, and I’m lucky to be rid of him,” said the woman.
Her friend was too wise to say anything . “It means I’ve been wasting my time mourning that wretch.” Said the woman. Her friend said nothing. “It means I miss him and I want him back. I’d do anything to have him back,” said the woman. Her friend just smiled and nodded. “Do you think there’s anything I could do to get him back, some bargain I could make?” asked the woman. Her friend shook her head. “Well, I suppose there’s nothing more to be done about that now, is there?” said the woman. She took off the sackcloth from around her head and shook the ashes out of her long hair.
“Come in and have some tea,” said her friend.
Afterward the woman sometimes shed tears over what had passed, but went forward and gradually reconnected with her friends. In a few years she met another man and married after a long courtship. They had a long life together, and shared much laughter.
Moral: we all lose things we cherish. But we all need to move on. What have you held onto that you need to let go?
- Sackcloth? (jennspeacornpopnuts.com)
- Sackcloth and Ashes (cofchristdailybread.wordpress.com)
- I Will Not Be Silent… (pastorandrewsblog.wordpress.com)
- Mystery Man in Sackcloth at the announcement of the new Pope (walklikeenoch.com)
- Observations on grief (rowanjanuary.wordpress.com)
- A Woman (waitingforthekarmatruck.com)
- Euthanizing a guide dog to bury it in the coffin with its blind owner. (althouse.blogspot.com)
- Friends Mourn the Loss of Motorcyclist Killed in Crash (abc22now.com)