Feb. 6, 2022

SADNESS OF THE HEART.

Basically, I’m a very-happy person. I don’t depend on anyone but me-- for my happiness. I have thousands of acquaintances, but no family,  and very-few close friends.  In fact, last year, Death took my closest friend.

For the last several weeks, I’ve experienced a deep sadness--much-like grieving the loss of a great love.  At times, the sadness is so emotionally-intense---I have no choice but cry. 

Such serious sadness occupies my mind during the day and much of my nighttime hours. Dreams often wake me and I’m instantly-flooded with past events--replayinging in my mind. I know-- everything in my life has a reason and a purpose.

February was the month—two years ago--- I was scheduled to return to China for ten days. Two years ago marked my thirty year anniversary/celebration to commemorate the “FIRST EVER” journey-- by a woman—of THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA.  My project was called: ALL THE WALL and-- like 30 years ago-- I had successfully arranged sponsors from both China and America--so my return to China’s Great Wall would be FREE to me. China’s Leaders had also arranged for me to meet with North Korea’s Leader, Kim Jon Un so I could experience a specific section of The Great Wall that “overlaps” North Korea’s border.  I’d been so emotionally-excited and anticipating this wonderful reunion with my old friend---The Great Wall—for months and then----The World Stopped.

Is it any wonder I feel such sadness, such grief, such loss?!?!? I never realized--until now--that fulfilling a childhood dream-- like mine--seldom happens to most dreamers. Yes.  It was a great love that lived in my heart for nearly a lifetime so---why wouldn’t I want to return to--briefly--re-live my life-changing journey?!?!?!? Why wouldn’t I want to return to China and re-unite with my wonderful friend---The Great Wall?!?!?

In 1990—after finishing my journey of China's Great Wall, I returned to America.  But, my journey had changed me; my life would never be the same again. Somehow, I’d become a different person after fulfilling my lifetime dream. I remember crying when I wrote the following words, as I tried to explain my feelings but-- my tears were always happy tears:

 “The more I mature, the less I allow ugliness from my past to invade my present. Instead, I block-out the ugliness with memorable moments. My Great Wall remembrances are never far away—they find me when I’m sitting in traffic, walking by the fast-moving river, or watching smoke-trails from a highflying jet. The Wall is with me when I smell wetness on mossy rocks, or jog through frost-covered grass. My memories often consume me and, like stepping into cold rain on a scorching-hot day, my body shivers with anticipation. I close my eyes and, in an instant, I’m back on The Wall.

Those are the times I can touch the wind, hear the silence, and share aloneness—all under a brilliantly-blue, open-parasol sky—that speaks only Chinese. I share those moments with tears filling my eyes, running down my face, dripping from my chin....and I don’t stop them. Tears are my evidence, my emotional reminders. Yes, I was really there.

The magic comes from knowing my—“Once upon a time”— began with a nine year old girl, a teacher, a geography book--and a Dream.”

UPDATE: These days---judging from the escalating tensions between China and America—there is no chance I will be allowed to return to China, ever-again, under any circumstances. I suspect it will be years before there is any trust or even a hint of friendship between the two countries.  YET--The Great Wall of China—and I will stay Forever Friends.  The BOND between us will never take a “backseat” to politics.   I’ll keep you updated if/when I’m able to activate my long-delayed plans.

Sally

PS.  The day WILL come (only God knows the exact day) when I WILL return to China and my old friend, The Great Wall---and I WILL stay together---forever.