Where there's the flower
there's the sun and the rain
Oh, but it's wonderful
they're both one and the same
~ Frankie Beverly and Maze
On this night he was missing his Auntie Deanna something ferocious. That usually quiescent grief rose up mightily and gnashed at his little soul. First, it was just his lip quivering ever-so-slightly while working math problems at the kitchen table. That's when it always happens. Over homework. Homework makes him miss her the most. So his mouth trembled. . . then, he just let it go. Those flood gates opened and out came the longing.
I tried with words at first but they fell on the floor in awkward splats. "I know she's in my heart," he said, "but that's not enough for me right now." And that was that. It wasn't.
And so. I just pulled him close and held him. Kissed his curls while he cried and cried. Eventually, he just asked to go to bed, which is what he always does on the nights that he grieves like this.
The next morning, I found him fast asleep. . . curled into the tiniest of balls and clutching this with both arms as if his life depended upon its safekeeping.
Even though that sight sucked the wind from my chest and nearly dropped me to my knees, it gave me a little lift, too. How precious is it that he remembers her with such tenacity! Oh, what a gift to not only him but to me! I love how he loves her. I do. His tears that day were as raw as they were in 2012. They were.
"Some piece of me always wants to miss her," I told Isaiah, "the pain reminds me of our love."
"She always said I was a special boy. And very smart." And he wept some more.
"Do you believe that?"
He nodded. "Because she helped me know that. And I still think about her every day. Every, every, every day." And the innocence of his words and the sincerity nestled inside of them made me both happy and sad because I knew they were true.
Joy and pain are like sunshine and rain. And you know? That's alright with me. It is.
Now playing on my mental iPod. . . .