“What is really important… about you or me is the thinkable you or the thinkable me, the abstract metaphysical you or me, … what communications we have made with one another …All you see is a little of my pink face and hands and my shoes and clothing, and you can’t see me, which is entirely the thinking, abstract, metaphysical me. It becomes shocking to think that we recognize one another only as the touchable, nonthinking biological organism and its clothed ensemble.”
Someone commented to me the other day, "Hey, I notice you never post anything about John any more. Do you still think about him?" The audacity! What an utterly ridiculous notion. Not a day, nay, rarely a minute goes by that he's not "on my mind." How could I ever possibly not think about him?!
I try to celebrate the man's life in everything I do - his influence is in every conscious decision I make. I still talk to him about everything, I still hear his laughter when there's something funny that I know he (and sometimes he alone) would appreciate. I see through his eyes. I wear his flannel shirts. His hat is on my head more often than not. I drive his truck. At the same time, I'm not mired in John - I am, as ever, my own person. I'm not stuck in grief that won't let me shake loose - I refuse to be. In fact, the days are rare any more that I do actually feel that deep, horribly painful grief. It's there, oh yeah, it sure is - and if you think I don't absolutely ache to have the man alive again, you're dreadfully mistaken - but John and I have both found ways for me to rise above the worst of that harsh reality.
Maybe you'll think I've finally gone 'round the bend (yay, I love travel), but I'll swear to you, he's got some kind of connection with my dog. Nino gives me looks and has reactions that are often highly reminiscent of John, and his playfulness is much like John's. The love that dog shows me, and the protectiveness... so John. And, really, why not? Why couldn't, shouldn't he have some connection? Animals see better than we do, they hear better than we do, they sense shifts in nature long before we do, their hearts are more open and accepting than ours. Why wouldn't they have some connection to a different spiritual plane of existence? So, think me crazy if you wish (close-minded fools), but I know what I know.
Still, I come back to the nerve some folks have... the total disregard with which they say stuff. How could anyone who knows me even a little... how could they ask that? How dare they?! Gads, and here I thought that I had no filtering system. I have no doubt that the unnamed accused is reading this post. Despise me if you need to, but do some serious thinking. Perhaps I should have replied to your email in private, but a) at the time it took every bit of strength for me to back away from the pc and let my hackles settle; b) had you said such a thing at a party, you'd likely have ended up - at least - with a drink or two poured on your head to wake your from your obvious stupor; c) I use this forum as a way to work through my shit whether anyone reads it or not; d) deal with it.
Furthermore... since when do I have to justify to anyone who I care about, when I care about them, or how I care about them?! What I went through with John (all 9 years of it) was nothing short of extraordinary. Walk 60 miles in my Asics and then tell me how to be. If any of you need constant reminder of how deeply I love the man, of how there he is in my life (still), of how vastly deep the chasm that his absence has left... you need to learn some discernment. And how. And now.
John and I used to live on the same road that a big church was on. We'd often get stuck in the line of traffic that was waiting to get into the church parking lot. Almost invariably, John would roll down the window and holler, "... and don't come out until you learn something!!!"
Amen, Darlin'.... amen.