When someone who has always been part of your life – so tightly entwined with your life that you can’t even imagine who you would be without her, so much a part of you that you can’t imagine a separation – when that person dies, everything stops for a minute. Well, for longer than that, of course, but in a manner of speaking. It doesn’t matter if you knew the death was imminent, or even if it is a blessed relief from untenable suffering, everything still stops. You exist for a while in a state of suspended animation, afraid to really relax for fear of the hurt that will surely be there. For a little while you walk around like this, just breathing in and out, forgetting that your regular life will soon begin to demand your attention.
When finally you are ready to begin to continue your life there might be a question about it all. Are the same things still as important or as interesting as they were when you had someone who enjoyed hearing about them? For whom will you make up funny little stories about your week? With whom will you talk about the books you are both reading? Will reading them still be as enjoyable now that you are the only one reading? Who will give you advice about all the little wonderings that come up? Will the colors ever be as bright again?
This is all part of grieving, of course. And life does begin again, and I suppose you find a way to continue after a while. But I wonder if you continue just a little differently. Maybe with a deeper sense of what, after all, is really important? Maybe you can go forward with a sense of the importance of loving and taking care of one another, of not judging things that are different from you. Maybe, just maybe, you can allow yourself to just let go of the defenses and be kind. I’m looking forward to this, at the very least.