Timeless Paradise, an essay by Ella Etienne-Richards at Spillwords.com
Aidan Formigoni

Timeless Paradise

Timeless Paradise

written by: Ella Etienne-Richards


It never ever dawned on me that you would leave so soon. We never expected it, in fact, it was the furthest thing from our minds. You, of all people, no one can believe it. It all happened so fast, so unexpectedly, that I can only shake my head in disbelief. It still hasn’t sunk in or maybe I just don’t want to accept it. I am wrapped up by this blanket of melancholy, hunted by the thoughts that we had not seen each other for a little while. If only I knew you would be going on a trip so far away, so suddenly, I would have definitely made an attempt to meet up before you left. I just took it for granted that you were always going to be around. I try my best and I pray every day to shake it off, to replace that feeling of disconsolation with comforting thoughts.

Our family times together were always full of laughter, mouthwatering dishes, and pure joy. We would always reminisce about the good old days, growing up. Being together on special occasions was always healthy and downright therapeutic, with nonstop jokes. I can’t get my head around the fact that another one of our ‘family events’ will be without you. We will surely miss your injection of humour and your general attitude of fun. You had such zeal for sharing information, on superfoods and so enthusiastic about promoting healthy eating.
I am awash in a sea of emotions, the senselessness of it all has left me numb with intense anguish and sorrow. Somehow I compel myself to dispel these feelings of despair which overwhelm me because I know you have reached that oasis of peace.
I am sometimes overpowered by fits of anger which I instinctively target at those around you, who gave you bad advice. Although deep down I know it’s irrational but I can’t help but point the finger at those who I believe, led you astray and brought about your downfall. I have convinced myself that if only you had acted sooner and made the right decision, your journey would surely have been delayed. In fact, everyone’s baffled that all of a sudden, in a blink of an eye, you’ve just left everything and everyone and gone. It’s like you’ve just vanished into thin air and I can’t help but think, life is just not fair.
I try to imagine where you are or if you’re even really gone. I get this incredible urge to give you a call hoping that everyone’s mistaken and you’re probably still at home. Maybe it’s a trick, you were always full of mischief and a bit of a prankster. I really never knew when you were serious or not. I am filled with consternation and a sense of regret that in reality, I may never set eyes on you again. I am continuously trying to understand the events that transpired, and not knowing enough has left me confused and in denial. It seems like it’s all a dream. The feeling of sadness and regret is so overpowering and we’ve been hit with a life-changing experience. My hope is that you are alright wherever you are.
So in your dream, you said you are fine, you said, “Tell everyone I’m doing well”. With your bag packed, cap slightly askew, eyes full of wonder and curiosity you’ve set off on your journey to discover a new world. Your message is comforting and reassuring, but everyone is still in pain and in deep shock. You’ve left us with sadness but we know there’s joy in your heart, meeting everyone, those who came and went before you, have received you with love, warmth and open arms. We know that your ‘Welcome Home Party’ was euphoric and absolutely blissful. You’ve joined the ancestral circle and you are now basking in glory.
Although that should put our minds to rest but we would prefer you to be here with us. Inexplicably, a hidden power oversees everything and whether we believe it or not we do not always have complete control over all events in our lives. So in our minds, the question lingers and we discuss it often with each other, could you have changed the hand of fate or was it really your destiny?
From childhood it was always the five of us, we grew up together and there was always a sense of family and we had each other’s back. We had our problems but that’s just the way it was and we found comfort in each other. Overall we were happy. We played in the sunshine, swam in the warm inviting waters of the Atlantic ocean, and ate everything the land had to offer. Cherries and mangoes, guavas and sugar apples, tamarinds and that refreshing, clear, sweet coconut water that no one could resist. We were never hungry, we always had an abundance of fruits and vegetables and all of nature’s bounty. We were never tired; we were full of zest for life and full of an innocent joie de vivre. Although sometimes our personalities clashed, we belonged together and that’s what made it all so special and wholesome. We had that sense of family love and loyalty that nothing or no one could destroy. It was like the glue that held us together and we were a damn good team. As the sun went down we did too reluctantly, tired and exhausted from the day’s adventure.
We would rise every morning energized by the brilliant sunshine streaming through the curtains, ready for anything the day would throw at us. We were wild and free and everything around was exciting and we just wanted to explore and discover. Every day was new and exciting. School was not just about learning it was more about having fun with our friends and enjoying our freedom from home. Mum was always there, our rock, our strength, our wall of protection. Mum’s care, dedication and love for us were first and foremost and even Dad’s tyrannical antics could not blight our happiness.
Invigorated by early morning swims in the ocean you and your boys Ozzie, Ray, and the rest of the gang were never short of wild and crazy escapades. You were always putting yourselves in potential danger and pushing the limits, like climbing up seaside cliffs, high jumps off rocks, and suicidal back flips into the ocean. You were always engaging in some mischievous pranks or stunts, all in the name of fun and adventure. Playing cricket, climbing mango trees, and building wooden model trucks, it was always pure non-stop fun. Back then we were never short of good old fashion outdoor games.
Although we have to accept that you have responded to a higher vibration, the circle will never be broken. We will always keep your positive energy and loving memory all around us. The journey we had together can never be erased. We were and will always be the Formidable Five. As you soar through the sky I can assure you that your light source is even stronger now because you will always be in our hearts and dreams.

Some may say it’s divine decree others might say it’s written in your stars but as life has it you’ve learnt your life’s lessons and you’ve been through the tests. You found your purpose, you lived your life the way you knew best and you contributed to the world. You gave something special to all those you touched. Some may agree others may disagree that you’ve handled the gift of life well. It’s definitely been a learning opportunity, the pains and the gains, there was always an element of growth. Those who really knew you understood your pain, that hole in your heart that nothing could heal. The mixed emotions, the inner confusion, a result of that broken bond, no doubt, inevitably shaped your future. But we were all born of love and since love concurs all, the healing will continue. We will always remember you as you boldly go on to explore other planes of existence.
However, we can’t shake off the shocking and painful reality that you won’t be passing back this way. Uncanny as it may seem in my heart and in my soul you will always be with us. The beautiful and wonderful memories that you’ve left us, are absolutely priceless. In time we will learn to understand and accept your transition.
Your dynamic energy will forever continue to burn brightly in our thoughts, in our prayers, in our conversations but most of all in our anecdotes and we will love you forever.
Thank God the pain is over, you can breathe again. As you float away on the ocean breeze we know now that your days can only be tranquil, serene, and bright. The journey to your new life opens up and there’s a comforting assurance that there will ‘never, ever be another cloudy day.’

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