The Disappeared

When children learn of the death of a beloved adult, often they are told things such as, "Grandpa is in heaven," or "Mommy is an angel now," and so on and so forth. As my parents were atheists, I was given no such pablum when my wonderful Grandma Bea passed on. Besides, I was seventeen and rock 'n' roll was much more important in the here and now than contemplating the hereafter.

Fast forward to mid-May 2015. One year ago, my husband was in terrible pain, only to learn in a few days that his body was riddled with cancer. At the time I was realistic. With no cure, the family simply loved him, completely in the moment, until his last breath. With the help of relatives, friends, spiritual teachers and my own insight, I was able to accept "the what is."

Once the body grows cold, attachment to the form wanes and that person becomes a memory. I get that. Nonetheless, as the season of May 2015 rolls around, an unpleasant feeling brews in my heart chakra and my mind plays tricks.

Remnants of Michael's life energy abound in what was formerly called "our" house; the precious books he meticulously arranged, the paintings we decided to hang in certain areas, the rocking chair with pillows his body had flattened with years of use. 

Despite nearly a year of reality-based thinking, magical thinking is setting in. I want him to walk through the door. I want to straggle behind him as he charges ahead of me up our steep driveway at the end of a walk. I want to get on a plane with him and go to Paris for one of those innumerable business trips we had made over the years (even with the dreaded experience of immersion in a language I couldn't master).

For a pragmatic person, this yearning seems counterproductive and almost silly, but the mind-body understands differently. Embedded in my sense memory are the particular qualities of daylight, the growth of new vegetation, the familiar sounds of the neighborhood.

Everything is the same and yet nothing is the same. Within this paradox I must live.

Comments

  1. Right there with you on this point. You are way ahead of me on others. Love to you, Sarah

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