Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Grief: An Idea Is Just A Breath

That was a phrase that came to me on Sunday.  An idea is just a breath.  We need to take that idea and transform it into something.  Don't change the world.  That makes me want to take a nap.  Tell the person who bags your groceries that they have beautiful hair - if they do.  Find a small thing. 

I have had so many people lately ask me in a nice way what I am going to do with the rest of my life.  I'm trying to rev it up but it's hard without Artie.  That's my racket.  That's my excuse.  Sorry, can't do it, dead husband.  It's the truth but it's my job to breathe the idea of energetic creative life coming into being even with dead husband grief. 

Saw a play today called The Mountaintop.  Pass the baton.  It's everyone's job to have a dream, to find out what their purpose is in life and be willing to take the risk to fulfill that purpose.  Find a fierce radical love - for yourself and for others.  The film Poetry of Resilience (poetryof about survivors of the Holocaust, Hiroshima, Rwanda and many other places won the award for best short documentary at the Woodstock Film Festival on Sunday.  I spoke briefly and received many nice compliments.  It was hard to take in.  There is from a moment of kindness a ripple effect.  Kimenyi - the poet from Rwanda - died about a year ago.  His widow Mathilde didn't say, "I can't take one more death."  She celebrates her husband's life.  One way she does this is with an organization called Friends of Rwanda Association.  FORA.  It helps orphans in Rwanda.  When she and her husband got to finally return to Rwanda after the genocide there they had a memorial for the people who died, and then a family reunion for the few that managed to survive.  Family reunions are an American idea but now lots of families are having reunions in Rwanda. Family reunions that are fractured with the number of dead - but still celebrate the living.  I lost one person and I spiral down and make his death an excuse - I don't walk home next to a river filled with bodies, or live a town where all the houses are empty because a million people have been slaughtered.  If Mathilde can live her life with joy, surely I can find my way.

Not saying it's easy.  I get tired.  I get sad.  I got a lovely facebook message from Artie's daughter who had no contact with him for many years.  She watched Pull Me Back - the DVD of the show I did about our life and love and his death.  She thanked me for loving him and taking care of him.  She thanked me for my grief.  I let her know that he loved her and was proud of her.  Somehow they have found a path back towards each other through me, even after his death.  My difficult damaged husband who I love so much.  Come back.  That's what I keep saying. Come back.  I know he can't.  Roll my memories backwards and here he is.

I was being worked on by a chiropractor - deep muscle manipulation that HURTS so I take my mind and go somewhere else.  Artie hated to travel when he was alive.  He said - "I don't have a body anymore.  Come fly up in the sky with me.  You can do it."  Was it my imagination?  I don't know.  But the chiropractor said that he can see when he works on me that I go somewhere. 

Someone writing a grief blog stopped after two years saying he was returning to the living.  I am part of the living.  Yet I am also in love with my ghost.  Proudly, stubbornly so.

Wishing you all the whoosh that it takes to make that breath of an idea into a reality.  To be who you are meant to be.  To fly in the sky, stay rooted on the earth, do what it takes to be part of this terrible, beautiful, sad, wonderful complicated thing called still being alive. xo

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