28 April 2014

Seven years and change

I don't post here anymore, not because I don't have anything to say, but it's like I've forgotten how to say it. That, and some of it I say in other places now, like Facebook. And then there's some of it that I only say to the people who are involved, in person, in real conversations. Then, sometimes I'm tired, although I'm never tired like I was back in the early days of all of this, so that seems a strange reason to not post. I guess back then, I couldn't acknowledge that I was tired the way I can now.

There's more luxury in my life, now, more margin for error. I run a ship that's not quite as tight as the ship I ran when John was sick and the twins were so small and there were days when every minute felt like a tiny, desperate lifetime. The ship I run now regularly veers of course with no grave consequences and lots of able crew to right it. On this ship, I sometimes choose to not do things rather than to do things—like blog. I read now, whole books sometimes! And go to bed early. Or stay up too late. Or myriad other things I didn't always allow myself to do back then.

I do want to acknowledge, though, that this space and the support I got here got me to the place I am now, and I don't want my silence here to be interpreted as turning my back on that. I'm still here.

Seventeen days ago, April 11, 2014, was the seven year anniversary of John's death. On that day, I posted to Facebook a poem that I found when a friend of mine posted it to her Facebook page. It's beautiful and so right. I will post it below, seventeen days late, but never too late for the sentiment to be right.
Reposting this beautiful poem in honor of John, who died seven years ago today.

To My Husband, Who 33 Years Ago Died at the Age of 33

De mortuis, nihil nisi bonum
Of you dead, I’ve spoken nothing
but good, nodded at over-fond
family memories, the favored first
son who skipped school to sneak
into the new museum. I’ve let
strangers tell our girls how you fell
forty feet taking a leak, behind
the garage, at your graduation party,
never dropping your grilled chicken
leg. Such was not the nature
of the man-to-be, yet these dull shards
are now my own. What else of you
can I offer our daughters, raised
by another man? You are at our table
always—in the gap, the sainted lost
father, shrouded in respect, silence
the price we pay for life. Was it wrong
to let you slip into cliché, pallid
memory? But how could it have been
otherwise? You have been undoing now
as long as you lived. Even the ink in your
notebooks fades. Remember how you
used to read “Dover Beach” and we would
shudder with faux foreboding? Remember
our pleasure when Emily said she didn’t
know how the sun set? Neither did we
then, nor did we much care. But oh, now
to see it rise again, one ribbon at a time.

Maryanne Hannan
Rattle #41, Fall 2013
Tribute to Single Parent Poets

18 comments:

Anne said...

Beautiful... Nice to hear your voice here again.....

Betsy said...

Really nice to read this - I think of you often and hope you and the kids are doing well. The poem is poignant...

tccomments2013 said...

oh, so lovely to find you here once again. I am a widow nearly one year out and have 2 types of cancer, both treatable but incurable. the losses so compounded - I was diagnosed with the 2nd cancer just 8 wks. after my husband died - finding him gone in our bed, dying in his sleep, but not of cancer which he had for 4 yrs. when I found your sight I read your entire blog from beginning to the last post. it helped me, it comforted me, and I have since been sending you waves and waves of love and gratitude and big hope that your life would get better. I just wanted you to know that your voice was heard, that you are a uniquely elegant writer, and that you helped me.

much love and light,

Karen xoxo

Scrappy_Lady said...

So good to hear from you. Space for variation in your schedule is a good thing, I think.

Little Bird said...

Lovely to read your words.

Heather

Donnag said...

I am still reading-- even if there hasnt been much to read lately. Wishing you and your family all the best.

Elizabeth said...

So glad to see you here!

Lil'Sis said...

beautiful...so glad you are well

KathyB said...

I'm not on Facebook much so I often miss stuff - thanks for posting this here; I love to hear your updates. I'm sending warm thoughts and good wishes for you, M, and R. The poem was beautiful - while I can't exactly imagine what it must be like for all of you as the years go on, so much of it rings true about the passage of time in general. I'm so sorry for your loss but happy that all of you had the opportunity for such a wonderful person in your life and that his legacy lives on through you.

gwen said...

Wonderful to see your blog name pop up in my reader, and even more wonderful to read your words again. Thank you for that poem; it's beautiful.

Sadia said...

Glad to hear you're well. I've had the different, much smaller loss of a divorce and am also single mothering now officially. And yes, there's much more wiggle room with older kids, mommy experience, and all that comes with time.

currently in sunny downtown sydney by the sea said...

so wonderful to hear that life is treating you well. thank you for sharing that poem, it's beautiful. i miss all the news of you and the kids but i'm so pleased it's because life is happy and you're ok.

taffy in sunny downtown sydney by the sea. xx

django's mom said...

I saw this when you posted on FB & might repost with your permission on the 7th anniversary of my husband's death this September. Although I never blogged, I do understand the sentiment of moving forward with what you need in terms of daily support. I'm not saying that quite right, but hoping I can at least communicate that I relate to what you wrote. You were (and remain) such a relatable voice for those of us who have traveled a similar road. I will continue to follow your journey, and I thank you for whenever you choose to make your feelings public, whether that be via FB or here. Lauren

Snickollet said...

Lauren/Django's Mom:

Yes, post the poem! It resonates for me like few other things I've read on grief, especially grief that's not so raw as it once was. If it's meaningful for you, please get it out there so that more and more people can see it.

Good thoughts and hugs to you.

-snickollet

Susan said...

Awh, good to hear from you again. I'm so not a facebook fan but totally understand. Best wishes to you.

~ Jolene said...

Snickollet! I came here to check on you and I was so happy to see that you still keep your blog. That was a beautiful poem. It's hard to believe it's been 7 years...I feel like I just read your blog sharing the tragic news. Sigh. I am so sorry yet I am happy to hear you are well. My brother in law with brain cancer passed on October 4th, 2012. It's been a struggle for my sister every day but I only hope that each day brings her closer to happiness again, just as I ask that for you.

Judith Spencer at TEFL STORE said...

I'm glad to see you again. I hope you will be fine and gain happy experience in life.

Helen Keyes said...

I'm glad to see you again. I hope you will be fine and gain happy experience in life.

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