In Your Coat

by | Nov 1, 2010 | 0 comments

I can still feel my feet on your tailbone and backbone as you lay down on the ground begging me to step on your back.  I can feel what it felt like as I slowly moved my feet up your spine- “slower, press down one foot at a time…” you’d say.  “I can’t!  I’m too heavy.  I’m afraid I’m going to hurt you!”

No matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to get that this is forever, that I will never see you or talk to you, or touch you again.

That is the completely unprecedented part of all of this…in every other trouble or trial, there is usually an end.  Or at least, as my therapist used to say of other trials, “In one or two years, you’ll look back and everything will be very different.”  Not this time.  It will take a couple of years just to fully process…and my entire path and life are forever altered…without my consent.

Maybe this is why it bothers me when divorce and death are paired in grief books.  I have no doubt that the separation and failed plans, shattered lives that result from divorce are devastating and have lifelong impact on all of those involved.  But…it’s still a choice for the most part- at least by one party or the other.  There is a decision made to get married, and a decision to part.  There is actually still hope or at least the possibility of reconciliation, or remarriage in the future- though that’s a rare occurence.  Oh, it is different from death on so many levels.

We took a walk this afternoon in the now chilled autumn weather.  The sun was starting to set so it was low across the earth- our shadows were long.

I wore your coat.  It was way too large for me, but I relished having it on.  On the way back, I went into the Dunkin Donuts at the gas station near the river and got a pumpkin coffee and also decided on a frozen pizza…not because I don’t have any other food at home, but because you liked it.  You would often want to get that at the grocery store saying, “It’s just good.  I feel like having it.”  And sometimes we would.

I thought about how simple everything is now- how a simple thing like going out in the brisk, sunlit air, pushing my child in a stroller- is a beautiful thing- not because I’m just enjoying the simple things in life as is the trend these days.  No, this is not trendy, and I don’t have to try- it requires no effort on my part because every act is already filled, overflowing with grace and strength and beauty.  Just to get up, just to go outside, and walk in this weakness- this very dark and lonely place…it is an act filled with grace.


November 1, 2010


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