Thursday, June 11, 2009

Moving Forward...

It is difficult thing...moving forward. Terrifying some days. I think the vulnerability can be more acute, because you truly know what it means to have loved and lost. It is a complex and often delicate topic. Creating murky waters. Some will dip their toes in the water, testing them only to pull them out and sit on the shore for a bit longer. Others may choose to never get in again, preferring to dance on the shoreline alone. And some may go for a leisurely swim and then decide to take a break on the sand, basking in the sun on their own. While others will dive in head first, totally submerging themselves. There is no right or wrong way. Just the way we choose. Each of us will find it on our own and in our own time.

I think that opening yourself up once again takes great courage. You risk getting your heart broken. But that is always a risk, whether or not your beloved has died. You risk finding love again, only to lose it once more. You risk watching another lover die. You risk giving your heart to someone and then having them do a two step all over it. And yet, I believe the benefits far outweigh the risks. Because only if you truly open yourself up, can you ever truly experience love again. And for me, that cushions the fall a bit.

Not that you will ever have that same love again. You can’t. And it one of the damnable things to accept. But that is not to say that one cannot find hope again. Or love. Or passion.

I have found that some on this journey may try to replace their beloved. I think that is a difficult path. Your lover is gone and no matter how your heart breaks, they will never be coming back. They are gone and I do not believe you can ever truly fill that specific void again. Time and healing will help us to discover how not only to survive but to live. It will always be there, but hopefully the ragged torn edges will heal and we will be left with a more tender pain and quiet sadness. But something that is no longer all encompassing. It will become another tread on our heart. Not to diminish the pain and heartbreak we feel when we lose a loved one, our heart was torn apart and that kind of heartbreak is going to leave scars. And those scars will become a part of us, changing us as we carry them. Some days they may weigh us down. But our hearts will mend and beat strong. Thankfully our hearts seem to be made of stronger stuff than I ever imagined. They can be torn out of your chest, beaten and dragged around. Run over repeatedly. And yet it still beats. We continue to live despite that fact our heart seemed broken beyond recognition.

I believe one can never have that same love though, it is unattainable. You will never find that person again and for better or worse you are no longer that same person anymore either. That love you had is gone and can never be recreated. And yet, I do not think this means the end of all hope. It just means that if you choose to find love again, it will be different. It will always be different. But with that, you may discover new things about yourself that were hence undiscovered. And you can find joy once again. And hope. You can smile. Maybe your heart has the capacity to hold more love than you ever imagined. And that love might be just as amazing as the last, only different. Like different hues in a rainbow. You will find someone who will take your breath away. Someone that you can see yourself hopefully growing old with and when you look at their hands, you may imagine them spanning the years…becoming aged and wizened, but still clasping yours. You may look into the eyes of a new lover. Or friend. Or both. And you may see love and tenderness. Someone who can sooth your own aching heart. And you will discover a new love. A new life. And with it new dreams.

Some have said they do not want to find love again. They only want a partner, a friend, or a good father. That they found love once and that is enough. It is different for everyone. There is no right path. No map really. We are all just wandering along creating our own paths. For me, I want rockets. I want someone to take my breath away. To have that glorious feeling of butterflies in my stomach when he enters the room. And when he touches me I want my skin to be on fire. Some believe that you can find a lover, or a good father, or a friend. But not all at once. Call me crazy but I believe that is all possible in one man.

There is no perfection in love. I am far from perfect as was David. And I think it is so easy to canonize your dead spouse. Yes, you loved them and there will never be another person like them in this world, but they were not perfect. Sometimes it is easy to forget that. A wise friend once said most men would never be able to live up to a saint and some would not even try. Dave was no saint, but I could see what he meant when I went back and read some of my writings. We had a beautiful marriage. Our love was strong and we had a good run for longer than many. It is easy to remember all the amazing things about him, and with that I think in some ways I was canonizing him. Creating this person that was larger than life. But he wasn’t. He was all too human as his own mortality is evidence of. He had strengths and weaknesses. He had hopes and fears. He rose to the occasion, but it is not to say he did not stumble. But bloody hell, we all stumble.
He was an astounding person and my life will forever be better for having had him in it for the last 16 years. I hope to take all the beautiful things I learned from him and being with him in life…as I live. As I move forward.

So here we are. It is a painful lesson to learn but a priceless one as well. Life is too short and love is one of the most precious things this world has to offer…and I for one believe we should embrace that however fleeting or eternal it may be.