In our lives we pass through tunnels. We spend a great deal of time either in a tunnel or worrying about the next one. I have been in a tunnel for a long time. When my wife died I didn’t realize how far in I had already traveled but there was no end in sight. This particular tunnel almost ended me…Until tonight.
Today was my wife’s birthday and I had her sister and her closest friends over to celebrate her day and her life. I stressed and cried over this day for months. Yesterday as I was making gift baskets for all of them I had to stop and cry during the making of each one. The overwhelming urge to stop and burn my house down with me in it was something I almost couldn’t bear.
The light began to appear but ever so dim.
As the guests arrived and each one entered the house…Each had a reaction to the weight I have been enduring inside these walls. It’s heavy and every where you turn all you see is Wendy…You can smell her, hear her, and feel her in every thing. It has made the tunnel I’ve been in that much harder to go through and everyone here now knows what it’s been like.
The tunnel has an end…I can see it.
As we chatted and went through the ritual of taking turns to give a eulogy, there seemed to be a common theme…Wendy meant so much to so many and her life was one of character, strength, love, and devotion. I realized I hadn’t been traveling alone after all. We were all traveling in this tunnel together but because of the darkness we couldn’t see each other.
Bricks form, I can see the edge of the tunnel.
We sat and ate, talked about life with Wendy. There could be a book written about her and a movie played by top listed actors who couldn’t touch the true star like quality Wendy actually was during her life. She was just that bright. None of us were aware that her star being taken from us would leave us so blind to think we were traveling alone.
The gang moved to the garage to smoke and talk some more. The stories flowed like melted butter on toast. The laughter ensued and made us temporarily forget our pain and our blindness. More laughter and even more stories that weren’t about Wendy but stories she would have loved to be part of.
The blindness is starting to wane.
Hugs of goodbye and more tears shed. It hurts because the bandages are being ripped off. I think it’s going to be OK. Even though I know there will never be another love for me, I can rest knowing I was loved by the best woman ever designed. I have to accept that even though the tunnel is coming to an end, it’s really connected to a brighter tunnel.
I won’t be burning my house down.