Don't forget to love 19/52

May 8, 2022

 

Week 19: Don’t forget to love

It seems sometimes I get stuck in the hollows of loss, and who could blame me after the death of my son, brother, father, mother, and countless others over the years. But then I remember the love and know that I must get up and move towards it. There is still love after loss, even though at first it is difficult to find. We will all go through hard things, eventually, and that is where our choice of love comes in. 

It took me many years to see love again, to view the world with rose colored glasses. I knew there was always love around me, I just did not want to see it, or feel it. How can you feel love when despair is all you know? Eventually I learned to feel love again. It started small with acts of kindness, tiny gestures, caring words. And for a space I would feel it, remember it again until it faded with the sunset.

Love after grief takes work. Remembering those you lost with love happens when we notice the memories they left for us, the fragments or their story that bleed into ours. Ryan only lived for 5 years, yet thirty-years later, he is still talked about. The trauma of his loss is still with me, there are days when the heartache is too much to bear, and I must distract myself. Yet on many days, most days I could share the stories of Ryan’s love for hours. Lessons I had learned because of him, love that I can still feel. 

There are times when I feel bitter or resentful of the ways in which my life split open. But that bitterness can only tarnish the memory of Ryan. I cannot step into the past and alter what happened to Ryan or I would have done that years ago. Instead, I savor those moments, the remnants of a great story that linger over time. The lessons of love that come from grief. The lessons of love that come from loving.

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