I came across videos of a trip Rick and I took 14 years ago this month. He knew going to Cornwall to explore the land of my ancestors had been a life-long dream and we spent five glorious days in England. We then met up with my son and his wife to explore several other countries in Europe. It was a trip of a lifetime.
I was going through the trip photos in my Dropbox folder and discovered the short videos I took using one of those little Flip video cameras available at the time. I forgot the videos existed! As I opened them one by one, I watched my husband being silly and playful, saw videos of him driving us down the narrow treacherous paths through the countryside, and even found one of us dining together in a restaurant in Germany with my son and his wife, where my daughter-in-law turned the camera on the two of us, providing me with a rare video of us together.
When I finished watching all the videos, I felt almost paralyzed. I was so overcome seeing these unexpected memories of that time we shared, that I didn’t know HOW I felt. And, of course, I started to cry and did so for probably two hours. As my grief therapist once told me, as time goes on, there will come a stage where there are very few new memories, so uncovering one I haven’t explored will be a shock to the system.
I thought I had seen every photo, visited every place we shared, touched every memento and piece of clothing that was his. But, out of nowhere, there was something I had not seen since he died, a memory I hadn’t uncovered. A memory I hadn’t grieved.
I guess I entered one of those rooms in the house of grief that I had never entered and processed before. After five years, it was unsettling, but what a bonus to discover those videos. Once I recovered from the shock and the grief of once again facing the fact that we will never explore the world together, I remembered to be thankful for the beautiful life we once shared. I’m so grateful for experiencing his love for me and for the adventures we enjoyed together.
You died five years ago
That fact alone
Can make my head spin
Five years remembering
And longing for you
Five years of quietness
And hearing your voice only in my head
Five years of relearning
What life felt like
Before I met you
Five years of discovering
That I can survive, and thrive
But miss you all the same
Five years of memories
Created on my own
Without you by my side
Five years of knowing
That I was luckier than I ever realized
To spend twenty years with you
Dear Katherine. Thank you, for sharing you warm and insightful journey. My husband’s father was born in Cornwall, he went there many times. Like you, we were together 20 years, and I met him just before my 40th birthday, the LOVE of my life. We move into this new life taking them with us I truly believe. Sending you love and light..
Thank you for your kinds words, Elizabeth. We have so many similarities in our lives! I agree – we are taking them with us on our new journey. The love never dies.