Since we had no plans today, we took our walk along the river to Whole Foods. We walked down the pier where we’d taken that ship and Audrey said quietly, “Appa.” Then I sat on the bench and cried quietly looking around and picturing him standing there waving to us. It had made me so happy. “Is that your husband?” the other people on the boat had asked. “Yes, that’s my husband,” I had answered with that proud sense of ownership we have when we speak of “my” husband or “my” wife. But they are not really ours are they? Not to keep.
The brisk October weather is such a contrast now from that hot day in June that I can no longer imagine that day was yesterday or not that long ago.
At Whole Foods, I look around at the other people while we eat in our booth. I want someone to see me, even some stranger, and notice my loneliness or sorrow- but no one does. How could something so powerful and so strong be so invisible? Perhaps the invisibility of this deep grief can give me hope of other things invisible.
I thought about how far apart we are now Dan- not just because of the great chasm, but because I have changed so much since you died. The insights and perceptions one receives through this tragedy are so great that they quickly change us and create more distance. It reminds me of Audrey’s own rapid development. You are missing so much. But, I still think, it’s not too late- I can fill you in. We can sit down with a bottle of wine and I can explain everything that’s been happening- especially on the inside of me. I can tell you all I’ve learned so far about life and love. The things that I didn’t know at all before…
At night, I still pray for you first like always when I say prayers with Audrey. Sometimes when I say it, it feels good – like maybe you’re still somewhere on this earth. I’m not sure why I do it- I don’t believe you need my prayers, but I suppose it’s my way of still caring for you. It’s what I’ve been doing for so long.
Before bed, after the lullaby my mother sang to me, I sing Amazing Grace to Audrey, but I skip right to that last verse- and try to imagine this timeless place:
When we’ve been there ten thousand years,
bright shining as the sun,
we’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
than when we first begun.