Yesterday was a very good day. Actually this whole weekend has been wonderful. That feels very good. It also feels a bit like betrayal.
Yesterday I spent the day with a good friend enjoying San Francisco. We walked the Embarcadero starting with the booths outside the Ferry Building. I came across an artist that made beautiful paintings and interestingly he was an author, too. Then we entered the delicious realm of delicacies and savory treats that abounded. Armed with pork buns and bomboli we found a wine bar and enjoyed the delectable taste treats washed down with exciting vintages. Conversation was wonderful and stretched across many themes.
Then we walked the Embarcadero. It was a perfect day weather-wise (those that know San Francisco know that is the actual San Francisco treat) and while jockeying around tourists and families we enjoyed conversation and friendship.
We ended up by the water watching crazy people swimming, sailboats heading out under the bridge, and recalling memories. Of course my mind went to the constant of the loss of my husband. But sitting there I could feel the joy and the satisfaction that my husband felt at my happiness. It’s interesting how we often feel that we need to be constantly sad by our loss. But as I sat there truly reveling in the day, I felt peace. My husband was with me and he was happy that I was enjoying life.
That’s what I believe those that pass on really want for us. They want us to remember them of course, but they don’t want us to stop our lives. They don’t want our life to be like a watch stuck on the time when it was shattered. I know that Terry never wanted that for me. In fact, I know that because of his way of being and the love he had for me, he felt he could leave because I would enjoy days such as yesterday.
It feels a bit counterintuitive to say that. But it also feels very right.
Oddly enough I didn’t feel the slightest bit of guilt for my enjoyment yesterday. I think it’s the first time I have experienced that. Every other time I was enjoying myself I felt a twinge, and sometimes a down right punch in the face, of guilt and loss. Yesterday I realized that my loss will always be with me. The insurmountable feeling of something missing will be constant as I move through my life. But the point is that I move through.
It’s not dishonoring them to be happy. To enjoy the sweet taste of nutella wrapped up in a delicious sugared pastry is actually celebrating them in some weird way. Laughing, being joyous, truly submerging in this world is what I believe they would want us to do.
It takes courage to go out into the world after great loss. It takes strength to decide to live when you’ve lost such an integral part of your soul, but that is what living on is about. It’s seeing the beauty in the world even though you’ve been battling through the pain, suffering, and torture of losing the love you had with the person who as departed.
I know my husband wanted me to be happy and to go and live completely. He wanted me to eat, drink, be merry, travel, stretch my boundaries.
So this weekend when I played with my granddaughters enjoying their sweet giggles, ate dinner with my daughter and her family in their new home, and basked in the sunshine in one of my favorite cities, Terry was right beside me and happy in my contentment and peace.
What we think those who pass want for us is not what they truly want. When I am in sorrow and so sad at my loss of the man I loved, I actually feel him at a distance and its far more painful. But yesterday in my bliss I felt him sitting right next to me, smiling at my laughter and happy that I was out in the world enjoying it’s beauty.
The week after Terry died I sat down and watched the movie, We are Marshall. It’s the story of a college football team who loses almost everyone on the team in an airplane accident. The story focuses on the college’s desire to rebuild and to honor those that had passed by not giving up. The movie spoke to me so strongly the first time I watched it and today, as I was writing this blog, the movie came on again. It was at the end scene when the team pulls together and wins. I sat watching and seeing the joy on the faces of those on the team as they watched their once decimated football team rise up out of the ashes and actually win and to honor those they loved by playing the best they could. I don’t believe in coincidences so I know I was meant to see this as I was writing this blog.
It was a confirmation that what I am feeling and writing about is true.
I know tomorrow I may not be able to leave the house because I will be lost in tears and sorrow. But today I am celebrating life. Celebrating my husband’s memory by being fully immersed in the world. It is the best way to honor the love that we shared and truly the best way to carry him with me.