I’ve watched the stars fall silent from your eyes
All the sights that I have seen
I can’t believe that I believed I wished
That you could see
There’s a new planet in the solar system
There is nothing up my sleeve
-REM, The Great Beyond
Within the mix of the 20+ years of bipolar insanity, I had a respite. 9 years with my husband, who gave me a home where serenity and peace resided. It was almost spa like, a retreat. Every guest, upon departure, would drag their heels and tell us how much they did not want to leave. And it was paradise. In retrospect, some days I think it was all an imaginary world – perhaps I had slept for those years only to wake up after my worst nightmare…
He was an incredible man. I loved him forcefully, passionately and without question. I believed I had found my mate, the one who would be with me until we grew old, grey, feeble. He used to ask me if for some reason he became disabled (he had quite the imagination) and could only speak like a crow, what would I do? Would I leave him? Never, was my response. I would wheel him onto our screen porch every day and let him talk to the crows who loved our yard, who flocked to us in the same manner the hummingbirds came back every spring.
I want the hummingbirds, the dancing bears
Sweetest dreams of you
Look into the stars
Look into the moon
Coming home everyday was an adventure. I never knew if his dancing feet would be on the stairs that led to the kitchen, or if a treasure hunt would be waiting for me to find him. He was passionate about life, art, writing, the world. He loved to love and he seemed to have an endless supply of it. Perhaps he was trying to get it all in, during his 44 years, before he was taken too soon.
One of my favorite memories, although I will admit that once asleep I am loathe to get up in the middle of the night, was when the meteor showers were bursting in the dark sky during the winter, and we crawled to the roof of the house, where he had set a futon and numerous blankets for us to lay on as we counted the number of falling stars we saw within a minute, an hour. There was also the night of the lunar eclipse, where we stood in the freezing temperature for hours, taking shot by shot photos of the giant orb as it disappeared and then reappeared again…
You are the star tonight
Your sun electric, outta sight
Your light eclipsed the moon tonight
You’re outta sight
There are so many other stories. They will emerge when I can let them go. But for now, I keep many close to my chest. His light did eclipse the moon. He was always a star – even if he did not think of himself in that way. I miss him every day and will always wonder if he hadn’t died, hadn’t left me, if I would be sane or at least better than I am now. But as I knew before I met him, as I have told my current partner many times, I am a big girl – even if I don’t feel that way. I will somehow make it. Or I won’t. But the choice will be mine. That is what big girls do. Make their own choices and follow them through.
© Sorrow & Kindness