I went to call you today- but remembered you weren’t there. Then I thought, maybe I’d call you anyways so I could listen to your voice on the machine. I’m so glad I saved your last message… I had no idea at the time it’d be your last message. I contemplated deleting your name and number from my phone… but then I thought seeing your name once in awhile would be a good way for me to keep you close in thought. I don’t know, maybe I’m just not there yet. Not today at least. I still might call your voicemail.
I keep rolling in and out waves, sloshy wet quarter size tears and the dry heaves that crash into the back of my throat. It hurts when you miss someone so much. And its not like we’re in argument and I can make some grand gesture of love to win back your affections… you’re simply gone from this world and there’s not one thing I can do to change that. I’m practicing the first step in any problem- powerlessness. I am powerless over this situation. I cannot bring you back, turn back one page in time. Even if I could I wouldn’t bring you back into the pain your poor little frame was in.
We used to walk the trail down by the river.. Summer was your favorite, I preferred the Fall. We walked through many seasons of life together. The first time you got sick again I was mad at you. I’m sorry. I’m astonishingly selfish. I was scared I couldn’t live without you- like any good parent you taught me better than that. You continued to give even while the cancer took your comfort, your weight, your hair. Somedays were better than others- there were glimpses of hope. But last Monday you called and broke my heart. We said our goodbyes. They ended in laughter. “God- show me what you want me to do and I’ll do it, but I’m not gonna like it so you better damn well help.” This was the first line in your recovery story.. it brought truth to how we sometimes stumble into our relationship with God. Not graceful, but honest. This is the note we ended on. I know you knew how much I loved you- I know how much you loved me too. I’m going to miss walking with you. I’m going to miss having coffee with you and discussing my favorite subject; me. (You would have found that last joke funny. Not everyone will get it.) I guess all that’s left is the paying it forward act. You told me I was ‘in training,’ and to pass it on. I will do my best day by day to honor my word. Thank you for every single moment- each one was a gift. I love you Janet.
Janet was my spiritual mentor/friend/mom/sponsor. She passed away Monday the 5th from cancer. She went with a smile on her face.