Monday, June 15, 2015

Some things I've learned...

Early on in hospice I realized that often, those with the most to lose at the end of life have the easiest time. By the most to lose, I mean fulfilling relationships vs. a lot of unresolved issues like love unexpressed, anger swallowed, love lost, and so on. In terms of my grief, this has been The Truth. We lived and loved as hard as we could – all in, all the time. I am so glad we did it that way!

Flagging in the Park, June 2015
In a real sense, love is love. I’m three months post losing the Love of my life. Several times in these times, people have told me beautiful, joyous love stories of their own and within my grief, they make me so happy. And I see lovers walking along the sidewalk, people lying in the park, embracing – not to mention sweet parents and children together(!!!), and they make me happy. There is melancholy within my happiness at these times, but happiness is the main thing (though I’m a good ways from happy all the time).

There were times in that last month of Leslie’s beautiful life when love would come down around us as clearly and palpably as if I’d taken a large dose of mescaline. It wasn’t just a momentary thing either – it would be for hours, even days. Aldous Huxley wrote about heaven and hell. That’s what it was.

And there are those questions I asked weeks and months ago: who will I tell my stories to and who will hold me as I pass away? And the answers I’ve found in this embrace and honoring of my grief are that the stories have been told and we’ve held one another and so it’s ALL complete. It’s done. I want more, of course.

I can say these things in large part because of the steadfast love and support from David. Having a son like David is like having a wife like Leslie – more than I could have imagined. Ahhh, Son. I love you. John, Jeff, Aletha, Nora, and so many others play important parts as well.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Story (a song by Brandi Carlisle)

All of these lines across my face
Tell you the story of who I am
So many stories of where I've been
And how I got to where I am
But these stories don't mean anything
When you've got no one to tell them to
It's true... I was made for you

So, yeah, I have stories of who I am, where I’ve been… and now you’re gone and who will I tell my stories to? Who will know? And this morning I was listening to this song by Brandi Carlisle and I was thinking how you knew my stories, including the deepest ones, all my life, the good, the bad, all my stories. I was thinking how I knew your stories, the good, the bad, all your beautiful life. I was thinking how in your last months you talked more than ever before about yourself, your childhood, so many stories.

And here is the point: we told one another our stories. I told you my stories; you told me your stories; we lived our stories together. We were made for each other. Who could ask for more?

The Story by Brandi Carlisle (link)