I’ve used this face before. It is the careworn defiance face, a self-portrait of the wife of the patient, taken mid-December 2011. Mark and I had been through hell, and we were so tired.
If we’d known how few rivers we had left to cross, if we’d understood that we only three months left to us, would we have [fill in the blank]?
Answer: I miss my husband. I miss him so terribly. His absence is palpable now, at this writing.
Let me cry. If I am crying today, it means that I am walking with my loss. Tears come, then words come. I am empty, then emptied, dark to lightened, lost to fallow.
Grief. A harrowing experience.
Let me cry. It is a gift, to feel, to be able to touch this loss, and know it as mine. It’s proof of the enormity of Love, how blessed I have been. It’s what remains, the sense-memory of the old normal, what cancer doesn’t own/can’t touch.
Let me cry. It is relief, this sorrow, and reaching it is a hard-won victory. When the wave finally comes in, reaches the shore, washes my feet, my legs, I sink to the sand, feeling the pull, and there I make contact with the great All, and I am finally a whole human being again, head and heart engaged.
In these moments, I have him. My husband lives in those moments. Let me cry.