I have a friend who reminded me of how how to take communion. Drinking wine (and in my case tonight bread with smelly French unpasteurised cheese) reflecting, unpacking and then eventually finding forgiveness and redemption. Allowing the space to grow and unfold, uninhibited by past action, thought or feeling.
My Grandad was good at this. He enjoyed a regular tipple and knew the value of taking pleasure in simple things - like playing a record, both sides until memorised, the scratches becoming part of the soundtrack. Years later I'd hear the same piece of music on Spotify and wait for the place where the needle jumped. Or he would slowly prepare a meal, usually from the garden, with the ritual of an aperitif before dinner. Then the tricky selection of wine...which leads me back to my friend who recently gave me a bottle of my Grandad's favourite pinot noir.
If I drink this alone and reflect am I communing with God? I wonder. Or am I just getting tipsy on a Friday night? And does it even matter? Does the presence of another moderate or exacerbate?
So I cheers to my friend, to Grandad and to all the other great loves i have known. Light headed I loosen my grip on the day, myself and let things unravel a little, allowing the blur of edges rather than the hard lines. To a perfectionist, that is an act of of forgiveness and trust.
Then, packing away the remnants of bread and wine i am reminded of all of those last suppers that i have had: singing to Grandad as he was waiting to die, closing the door of my heart to a lover, or leaving a city, community, job saying "I'll be back" but knowing that I never would be.
And sometimes, when you look at it like that, life could become to feel like a series of losses, with the common prayer being "I am special, spare me this".
But I never truly believe that, so tonight instead I'll pray for grace.