Grief and the Man in the Moon

Staring up at the moonlit sky, I wonder if he can hear me, see me. Does he see the tears streaming down my face as I search for him in the stars.

I cling to memories these days; holding tightly so I don’t lose him, at the same time keeping them at a distance because it’s so painful. Each time a memory surfaces, I record it on my phone or race to my journal to write it down for fear I will forget. Like the other night, storm clouds cradled the sky as winds whipped, throwing branches this way and that. The rain pounded against the house so hard, it woke me up at 2:00 am. Thunder cracked, lightening tore across the sky. I got up to make sure everything was ok outside, then laid back down. As I began to close my eyes, I remembered other storms–other nights like this. Mike and I would wake up and get up, excited as little kids at Christmas. We’d stare out the window and watch the storm for a bit, taking in the magic of Mother Nature. Then we’d crawl back into bed, lay on our sides facing each other, reach across the bed and hold hands until we fell back asleep. We loved storms, and any time they woke us up in the middle of the night, we’d wake and watch, gazing in wonder and amazement. We did this often, it was our “thing”. Just one of many.

Back in the present, and the storm continued to rage outside. I laid there, staring at the ceiling, remembering those moments with him, moments in time, moments I’ll never get back. Hours ticked by, and the constant silence that surrounded me couldn’t even be overridden by the humming of mindless television in the background.

I sit in silence, I work in silence, I walk in silence, I eat in silence. Silence. So many say they would love a moment of silence, a moment to themselves–wait until you have it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It’s easy to say, “I’m alone too–for now.” When for now is temporary. When you know your spouse will walk back through the door and tell you about their day, kiss you, sleep next to you, hold your hand, share the bills, help make dinner, sip coffee with you, walk with you, take a drive with you. A moment alone is just that, a moment. When the energy of the one beside you–your person, your truest love, is gone, you wish for anything other than a moment of silence.

Breathing deeply, I stared up at the moon. Tonight’s the first night in many where the air is crisp, cool; moonlight and darkness alike bending and dancing around me, surrounding me in a hazy metallic shimmer. Puffs of marshmallows float by as I stare through the midnight, entranced by the moon.

Have you ever stared at something so hard, so long, that you start to see a shape or an image appear from the thing you are staring at?

That was me tonight, staring so hard at the moon that I started to see his face in it. His soft tender eyes, his nose, his full lips. I held its gaze, and my breath, desperately hoping that it was really his face I saw. As another giant marshmallow floated past, it concealed the man in the moon and I was left looking up at a faceless sky.

Wiping away the tears, I clung tightly to my sweater and headed back inside–to the silence, the stillness. Another memory surfaced, reminding me of the amazing love I had.

I sat down, I wrote. I don’t ever want to lose them–they are all I have left of him.

This is grief, these are the moments that are sometimes to hard to share.

May grace, guidance, and gratitude light the night sky as you walk through your own journey.


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