“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, Love leaves a memory no one can steal…”
My husband is going through something right now, something instense and heartbreaking… something you only do a few times in your life (if you’re lucky), something he wasn’t prepared for.
…something I should be there for…
You see, from the moment we began dating we have been together… and yet, much of our life is spent apart. He travels for work and has spent 99% of our 12 years together… apart. However, in every moment when it really truly mattered, we were there for each other.
In August of 2011 my grandfather died. Eric was home with the kids, ready to hug me and kiss me and hold me each night when I came home exhausted and emotionally drained. He was patient when I snapped his head off because I was over tired and stressed, He understood my silence and tears when I just needed him to know what was going on inside my head and not have to ask me. He was there. The very moment he took his last breath and I looked around for someone to pull me back down to the ground, he was there.
Now he is having to go through the motions, listen to the conversations, wipe away tears, choke back words, give a million hugs, and say his goodbye to his friend and fishing partner… his Grandfather, but I am not there.
With three kids, financial limitations, a brand new business developing within the farm, footbal in full swing, school schedules and demanding animals at home …there was no realistic excuse I could come up with to explain a plan to selfishly get myself to New Mexico to be by my husbands side for the funeral. Seeing as tomorrow morning is the funeral service and I am sitting here in my quiet house… I never found the perfect miracle to accomplish this plan.
I attempted a little therapudic art project before he left to satisfy my need to do something… but it didnt seem to have a lasting effect. Although he is surrounded by family; lots and lots of family (some of whom he hasn’t even seen since he was wobbling around in diapers), I still feel guilty that I am not there holding his hand, hugging him or simply listening when he needs to talk. So here we are approaching the day of the service and although this art project of mine is right here staring me in the face, I am overwhelmed with the emptiness and chaos this distance brings.
And so I begin to search the web for inspiration or ideas to unload these thoughts.
As I flipped through various quotes and images inspired by grief or meant to encourage those suffering the loss of a loved one I began hearing a common theme…and became inspired to write.
When the time comes to say goodbye
do not be afraid to let yourself cry
a few tears can help you heal
a few tears remind you this is real
I loved you dearly all of your life
my friends, my family, my children, my wife.
But, please do not stand at my grave and cry
For I am not there, you know why.
I am the quiet rustle of leaves as the cool breeze blows
I am in the crisp still silence in the air when it snows
I am the gentle kiss of a raindrop on your face
I am the peace you feel in your favorite place
I am in the soft song of birds as the morning fog glides over the lake
I am in the vibrant colors of the sky that only a sunset can make
I will whisper memories of love to you in your heart
so you can know we are never truly apart
so please dear loved one, hear these words I say to you
take them to heart and know they are true
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
because I am not there, I did not die.
(I must give credit to my inspiration for this poem… I hope it doesnt sound too similar to the original:http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/do-not-stand-at-my-grave-and-weep/)
Also… to end Id like to leave you with this sweet little inspiration: