Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Remembering Ed: Year Two

June 2, 2009

Dear Ed,

It is another beautiful June morning, and my thoughts are of you. Two years ago this afternoon you took your last breath and left us. I think of you often and love you forever. My life has been utterly changed without you. I still listen for your footsteps and see your eyes looking into mine. I do not know what lies beyond the grave, but I know you could not have continued to live in this world. Your body wore out. Your suffering ended, and all of us here continue on without the grace of your presence. It is still hard to believe that you are gone.

I still sleep on my side of the bed, and your space is empty.

The dog tries, but does not fill it.

Maybe he is also looking for you when he runs away, as he has been doing lately.

I am building a new life for myself, but it is a different life, an emptier one. Nothing will ever fill your space because you were part of me and our lives together were one life. I miss your wisdom, your comforting presence, and having you as the one who loved me best of all.

This afternoon, in remembrance, Jesse and I will go to the mountaintop where we left your ashes. It is a beautiful spot, on top of the world and close to heaven. I look up there daily, and think of you as I drive across Albuquerque in the car you bought me.

Chrysler is gone and General Motors is going. And you are gone, too, as is a whole way of life. As another one-time Michigander, you, too, would understand that nostalgia for the fifties and sixties when prosperity rode on Detroit’s wheels and the shining post-war future looked so bright. We were both young, then, although you were older than I.

You would be delighted and amazed to see Obama as our president, although his job may well be an impossible one. America will never elect a Black man as president, you said. You would happily have been proved wrong.

Today, I go to vote for the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy Board that controls our life-giving irrigation water, another area fraught with controversy and difficulties.

Later I will go to school to interview candidates for my replacement in the library. I think of all the things that I did not accomplish in that job, and hope that someone else will be able to do them. I also think of what I did accomplish, and doubt that anyone else could have done what I did.

A plane with 242 people aboard has disappeared in thunderstorms over the Atlantic. How often when you and I flew over that water, I reached for your hand during bumps, knowing that our lives could end in an instant, but that we would die happy. I can still hardly believe that God brought you to me. What a gift it is to have a loving partner.

Life changes, and the world goes on, at least for now.

Your still loving and grieving wife, Linnea