This is a very sweet book we’re reading, I think, and, boy, was this week’s section somber. The death of a child and the moving toward death of a gentle person, one of the book’s main characters. As I re-read this week’s chapters I tried to track my mood. When I sat down to read I was energetic and extroverted. By the time I finished I was introspective and quiet, full of wonderings.
For instance, I wonder if the author is making any kind of a statement about the “randomness” (dare I say unfairness?) of life, of a man getting cancer soon after the unexpected death of his only child while another man is healthy but ignores his six children? Or the obvious juxtaposition Hill shows between Eve and Miriam. Given they are sisters and therefore come from the same basic environment, what has caused them to be so different?
I don’t have any great reflection activity to share here, but I do want to share these two lines from page 87. Their depth and implication caused me to literally set the book down and let them sink in:
“But it was Eve he wanted. Eve could not make the pain easier but her presence helped him bear it quite well.”
In terms of being in a relationship, everything I could ever want is summed up in those two lines. While I appreciate others who want to help me, when I am sad or hurt it is my beloved that I want with me. And I don’t expect her presence can take away the pain, that is too much to expect or ask of anyone (but, oh, how sometimes we try). But just having her near strengthens me.
Alone, I am one. Together, we are greater than two.
What a lovely story.