I read her card and teared up as my heart swelled. Justin said, “See? You are loved.”
There were oysters, and mackerel, and cuttlefish. Salmon and eel and eggplant and sea bream. Most importantly, there were friends to greet us at the door, and glasses of wine, and his eyes gazing into mine.
I remember that he liked to say, “Every once in a while, life presents a moment in which you have to say to yourself, ‘Self, life does not suck right now.’ THIS is one of those moments.” And he was right.
We held hands around the table, all fifteen of us, and prayed. We were thankful for birthdays and family, for food and hope. Even I, the one who does not make the sign of the cross, felt the grace of something greater.
She looked me in the eyes and told me it was time. And though I wanted to fight it, and hold on to her tightly, I knew it wasn’t my decision.
I said, “I remember the first time you put your arms around me, on our first date. I remember how that felt.” And even now, seventeen years later, I could feel my heart flutter.
All at once, I felt the heaviness of my loss. I had never felt unwhole before, but the enormity of it overwhelmed me. I cried and cried at what could never be mine, even though I knew I would never want it.
I let my body float on the water, gazing through the trees at the birds flying above. All I could hear was a gentle swish, swish. I thought I could float forever.
I hope you are all having a wonderful week.♥