When bittersweet holds no comfort

I try not to think, too often, about the darker side of where I am today. But every now and then I do reflect on past experiences. That’s when I hope above all else, that history stops repeating itself.  For the eight wives, husbands and numerous children in our family who’ve walked this path before me, history is cold and cruel.   Over four generations – more than a century – all of these women died before they reached the age of 50.    Surviving  husbands and children have been crushed, critically injured by the wake.  Inevitably life for them goes on but there are many scars. No-one ever recovers from this kind of tsunami.

Loving another human being, truly loving them unconditionally for who they are, how they are and rejoicing in what you are together is a pretty rare thing. Some of us spend a lifetime looking but never find ‘the one.’  Some think they’re in love only to realise a little down the line that it’s a charade. Lust, loneliness or an irrational fear of being left on the shelf masquerading as the real thing.  But when two people meet and time stops still around them, when they light up while the rest of the world suddenly fades away, they know.  The know they were always going to meet and they know they’re always meant to be together. For them, from that moment forward, being anywhere else isn’t going to work.

It doesn’t really matter whether you believe pheromones or fate causes this phenomenon.  This kind of love makes a couple greater than the sum of their parts, better together than each on their own.  Not just in the beginning when everything is new, fresh, anticipatory but all day, everyday, forever.  I know this sounds like a fairytale but it isn’t.  This kind of love happens in my family.  It’s breathtakingly beautiful and all too often its been  heart-breakingly short-lived.  Truly loving another, loving every single thing about them until you’re so close you’re one spirit with two physical bodies means any kind of separation – temporary during treatment or permanent through another untimely cancer-death is worse than intercision*

“Its better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all” is, possibly, still true.    But I’ve seen and felt what intercision has done to my family,  to devoted people in the prime of their lives. I’ve looked into the raw chasm, felt the excruciating pain.  Time marches on, days become weeks become years.  But these wounds don’t heal and bittersweet holds no comfort.

That’s why this time, cruel history, the past must stop. It’s a new century. It’s time our story ends  ‘and they all lived happily ever after.’

* Intercision: Read the His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman or try http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intercision

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