I was driving to work this morning, praying.
I will be honest in saying that prayer no longer comes naturally to me. I used to pray a lot. Not so much, anymore. I miss the conversations I used to have with God. It felt good to chat with Him (chosen because it is the most natural for me. For you, it may be Her or Them or a misty fog on the lake in September. I make no judgements).
Point is, I’m not sharing this for you to say, “Wow, how spiritual of Sheryl” or anything like that. I struggle with my spirituality. Nothing like going through some things to get me back on the spiritual path.
Anyway, I was praying about everyone I love. My dad is still recovering from his harrowing (truly!) fall. I also talked to God about some other painful, stressful things going on in our lives. As I finished my prayer, I felt better.
I thought of a dream I had the other night, about my first husband’s father. I loved him very much and when we divorced, he was collateral, along with other family members who were suddenly stripped away. Divorce is like that. Awful like that. I remembered his blue eyes… which reminded me of another set of blue eyes that I loved and missed. You know how your thoughts meander around and sometimes settle where you least expect them to. This was one of those journeys of the mind.
I thought of my grandfather, who died three months to the day after my first husband and I married, on July 26, 1980. He had heart problems and had had surgery a decade before. He seemed to be doing well. My featured photo is a year before he died, on a cruise with the family. It was my first and only cruise on a luxury liner. His, too. Well, actually, maybe not for him, since I seem to remember he played with a band that travelled by ship in the 1930’s… or was it the 1940’s? Heck, I don’t remember and it’s not the point.
The point. Well, I was driving along, thinking of him, and all at once, I started crying. It’s been 38 years since I last saw him, heard his laugh or got a hug… and yet…
I’d like to believe that he’s been watching over me. I thanked him for that, there in my car. I told him I loved him and that his legacy was one of love and healing. He was a doctor… oh, it’s a long story about a man who was so far ahead of his time with vitamins, herbs and a healing touch. He built things, like braces for legs, in his garage. He worked with people with disabilities, especially children with developmental disabilities. The neighborhood kids called him, “Doc”… and he was … almost… magical. He was a fantastic grandfather and made me feel utterly adored.
God, I miss him!
I have lost many people I love(d) over the years. It never gets easier. And if my grandfather’s death is any indication, I’ll never “get over” any of them.
There is no timetable. No magic amount of days or years.
I am not an expert. Although, as I typed that, I realized that we are all experts on our own experience… and my experience has taught me that love never dies. Cliche… but true.
So, tell me about those you’ve loved and lost… and I will tell you about mine. We can laugh and cry together… for as long as we wish.