What Remains Behind
by Patricia Jones
(Lake Villa, IL)
Last picture together July 2010
Tomorrow will be 4 weeks since the death of my beautiful husband, love and best friend Joe. We had such high hopes for a transplant but it didn't happen. The 2 years prior to his death was such a dramatic up and down ride. I called it life in limbo. We all felt like we were treading water trying desperately not to lose any ground but really going no where. We waited, and waited and waited some more until God finally called him home.
Tomorrow is New Years Eve. I'm caught somewhere between the numb I'm in denial phase and harsh reality slapping me in the face. I cry, I relive his last day, I hear my words over and over again telling the doctor to go ahead and stop the heart device that was keeping his heart beating.
I thank God daily for the blessings I have been given in my life. A few weeks prior to his death we were driving to a doctor's appointment. Joe said, "You know I might not it make to transplant. We have be realistic. Things haven't always been smooth for us (the loss of his business and our first home, his declining health problems, my brothers death at 33, his brothers death at 50, the deaths of our parents) but we sure raised two fantastic kids didn't we?" We sure did!!
My son, daughter and grandsons are my life now. Joe would want me to be strong. Facing 2011 frightens me to my core. I know with God's help I will make it through. It's not an easy road and not one I'm happy to be traveling.
The poet William Wordsworth wrote:
What though the radiance which was once so bright
Be now for ever taken from my sight,
Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;
We will grieve not, rather find
Strength in what remains behind...
That is what I will be focusing on tomorrow as midnight arrives. I will find strength in what remains behind. It doesn't make me miss him any less and ache to see him just one more time but with God's help I will get through this.
I pray for all of us this New Years Eve that for 2011 we might be able to focus less on our grief and more on the blessings that remain.