He lived twenty-three months after his diagnosis of death. We had many moments of blissful perfection, but many, too many moments of the simple daily routine. I find myself lamenting those moments of just moving through the day.
I wish we could have filled every moment of his last moments in this life with newness and magic. I wish we could have traveled to all those faraway places we dreamt about together. I wish we held each other more and stared into each other’s eyes more.
We had a love most aspire to have, and yet I wish we had more: More time to hold, to kiss, to touch, to taste, to share. We talked about everything, always, and yet I wish we had more time to talk.
I met a gentleman this evening who told me didn’t have good luck with widows. When I asked him why he thought that was he said that it was difficult living in the shadow of the deceased husband. I shared that when a woman loses her husband to death it’s not the same as losing him to divorce.
Death leaves a different void. It’s forever and ever and eternity. For some the memories can become more real than perhaps their life together was. I remember when my father-in-law passed away that my mother-in-law forgot every bad moment and elevated the good to near god-like stance. I think this is probably self-preservation and likely very common.
He told me about going to one widow’s home and that everywhere he looked there was another picture of her deceased husband. My mind quickly went to my home and the framed photos I have depicting us, and him from his baby days to his last and my refrigerator plastered with my favorite faces of Philip.
I made a mental note to never bring a man home! I understand his point of view, but I’m not ready not to have Philip around me. I doubt I shall ever be. I explained to him that for me, and I’m guessing for many widows, and widowers, that our loves will always be a part of us. I offered that our lives were intertwined for many years and that for me; Philip will always be a part of my sinew.
He nodded in acknowledgement and said, “Of course”, but I question that he truly understood. When one’s marriage is dissolved in divorce, the relationship was likely one of unhappiness and disagreements. The finality is one of relief. Ending in death, however, is quite different and not of human design. So the differences make it hard for someone divorced to relate to the heartache of death.
That’s not to say that I’m stuck in my past and unwilling to move onward and forward, because that wouldn’t be true. I know that Philip wanted me to find love again. I’m not convinced that will happen, but I do know that I don’t want to spend the rest of my years, of which I hope will be many, alone and unloved.
I yearn to have someone look at me admiringly. I want to feel that anticipation and excitement in the pit of my tummy again. I want to look pretty for someone else. I want to cook for someone and show off my culinary skills. I want to eat dinner across the table from someone who enthralls me, titillates me and who inspires me to be me.
I know that Philip and I shared our time the way we were meant to. I like to think that he wasn’t sad for what wasn’t when he departed. I, however, wish that I could have pampered him more, loved him more, adored him more…
I hope for another chance to perfect it.