After a year in Los Angeles something opened up in my brain. It was almost like a physical “pop”—a surge of something new. I felt more relaxed, more alive. The fact that I was settled, employed, and had a social life helped. But also, I am sure of it, the California sunlight. I found moments of delight. Simple happiness was a surprise. Our plain, carpeted one-bedroom provided me with much comfort and reassurance.
One afternoon, alone in the apartment, I felt compelled to sit in a pool of sun at the foot of the bed. It was as if a heavenly finger had pointed down to that spot. I crossed my legs and closed my eyes. Peace washed over me. Suddenly I saw myself sitting atop a mountain. The view was glorious. Peaks after peaks and limitless blue sky. And I felt my mother’s presence. And then . . . a caress. A warm, soft sensation that reminded me exactly of what she used to do: gliding the back of her hand gently on my cheek, pouring all her love into that touch. Tears streamed down my face. I was overwhelmed with gratitude for feeling her. For knowing she was with me.
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