Early Morning Thoughts
My day started at 5am. I stumbled through the dark for glasses, phone, sweatshirt. Following the Handy Man into the garage, then the car, I tilted my seat back and closed my eyes. Celine Dion serenaded us as he drove down the quiet highway. Every few minutes, I would open my eyes. My thoughts were going back and forth like the red and white lights that broke the darkness.
In a few hours, I will don my Sunday best and take Max to his first funeral. His best friend's father died last Friday. Max has been melancholy, but mostly seemed unaffected. Then, yesterday, he said, "Wes is too young for his father to die." Yes. Ten is much too young for your father to die.
This last week has stripped me of my invincibility. It has reminded me of how fragile and uncertain our lives are. On Thursday, my friend's husband died after a battle with leukemia. Shirley and I have known each other for 25 years. Neal (her husband) was only one year older than me.
Two deaths in two days.
I am okay with death. I have a firm belief that this life is not the end- that we will see our loved ones again. I am not okay with the pain of separation. No matter the age of the person, even when they've been ill, they are missed. Their absence is a gaping hole that feels impossible to fill. A child without their parent, a parent without their child. A wife without her husband.
I don't know why I was spared. Why my husband's cancer was simple to treat and gone in one surgery. Why my fear was short lived. Why I'll attend two funerals this week with my sweetheart by my side.
There is no sense to it.
The storefronts were unlit and empty when he stopped. I got out and stretched, trying to wake up for the drive back home. We met in front of the van, its headlights illuminating our embrace. I kissed his neck, then he kissed me. I held him tighter and said a little prayer, "Thank You for letting him still be here. Thank You for his health. Thank You for this, this morning, this embrace, this security, this man."