The time has Come. An End and a Beginning

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In the first days time stood still. Stopped. The air lingered before his face glassy, slow and thick, like maple syrup.
The world seemed to be moving slower in focus, and faster out of focus. No one could see inside.

When the phone rang it made her jump. Everything made her jump now. The little blue light from the desk that blinks on and off in the room in the night where she lies awake. The sound of the garbage truck out the door startles her with a rumble that shakes the morning. The words of concern that pierce the silent thoughts running, nowhere; and then drop off only to be replaced with more. A conveyor of lost, speeding thoughts circle until concern interrupts again. They don’t know, they can’t possibly. The world keeps moving faster out there in the dawn. Sleep comes easy for those who’ve never known. The view outside looks carefree, colder, lonely.

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In the first weeks time stayed still. Delayed. The air paused beneath his nose and at his fingertips like a heavy white, cold morning fog. With every tick of the hand passing quicker out there, as life kept moving slowly in here; dragging on, despite his efforts to speed it up, to jump past this hour, skip over this week where the air is still heavy, sleep still doesn’t come; to go back to how it was. The concerning interruptions found no comfort in their temporary home of swirling thoughts. They now dropped off the conveyor as quickly as they arrived. Only the memories made her jump now. Every one of them seared in her mind like regret onto a heart. The view outside is warmer, brighter, unreachable.

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In the first months time started racing. It became hard to catch, a constant chase. There was never enough air. And what there was of it, filling the space around his ears and throat; was always sharp- thin, hot, pressing in. Everything no longer made her jump, in fact nothing made her move. The garbage trucks rolled by, and the earth shook in magnitudes, while she stood vacantly planted to the floor, unwavering. Sleep had returned, but it was filled with those thoughts, those questions. Sleep avoided those concerning words the dawn would surely bring. There was never time to let the thoughts overrun anymore, they were only invited long enough to remind him to keep moving, keep going. The world seemed to have shifted. It now moved faster in focus, and slower out of focus. There was little time to wonder how to keep pace with the outside. The new world inside was all that mattered, the only place she could breathe anyway.

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In the first year time was threaded together. First by minutes, then weeks- and soon, by new memories. The air was fresh. It smelled clean like after a first rain, and renewed his lungs with each inhale. Sleep came a little easier and a little longer, and the words of concern were now heard as words of compassion. The thoughts no longer dropped off the endless conveyor of hopelessness, they sprouted wings and grew in her mind. The ideas took flight, leaving everything else behind, to show him he was stronger than he was before. His world kept perfect pace in this new era. Time was no longer measured by how long it had been since they first knew. She could see life still move around her and even though it would never know, she would. Her focus turned outward only long enough now to remind her of the focus found inward. The view outside looks inviting, careful, worthwhile. This was a new chapter marked in time, by time. The piece he looked to that told him to keep going, keep breathing the air, and focus; on this first day of the new days.

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