Ten years ago today in a sweltering garden at high noon, Brian and I were married. I remember that day thinking, “we made it.” After meeting when I was just 19, our years together were a roller coaster. In spite of the tenuous nature of our relationship for many years while we were trying to grow up and figure out what we collectively wanted, he always remained my friend.
And honestly today, that’s who I miss the most. My friend Brian. He was my lover, my support, my confidant, and my escape hatch, but he was ever and always, my truest friend.
Last night as I was reading through our love letters it struck me again how much brain cancer changed him. I was talking it over with Adrianne and she agreed that there was a distinct teenage Brian, young adult Brian, and post cancer Brian. I like to remember young adult Brian the most because he’s the one I fell in love with. He was goofy, charming, and romantic on the exterior, but even then there was a depth and melancholy to his emotions stemming from always trying to be everything for everyone. And you can’t be that. I found a few letters that were really hard to read. The one where he laid out the reasons why we shouldn’t be together back in 2005. Even reading that letter, I could sense the agony of indecision in his mind. And then three years later he wrote a very long email to me explaining all that had transpired for him personally, and why he thought we should be together after so many years. It would be a further 15 months before we were both on the same page and moving forward together again.
Grief ebbs and flows and today the tide is high. Marriage is hard and ours was no exception. Our difficulties were exacerbated by more than our fair share of trials in our short time together and we didn’t always make the best decisions. But this morning in my meditation, I felt a rush of relief. A release of guilt and a flood of forgiveness in my heart flowing to and from my husband. The time without Brian doesn’t get easier, but the ability to look back does afford me with a growing sense of clarity. That is what I pray for. I pray for the eyes to see things as they were, not as I thought they were, not as he thought they were or whatever anyone else observing thought they were, but for an objective view, a Heavenly view even, without the tangled mess of my human emotions to limit my perspective. I understand that I may have to wait until the next life to realize this, and I hope that Brian has. I feel that Brian has.
So, friends, I ask that in honor or our love, you do something kind for someone else and report back to me. That’s what Brian would want for our anniversary I’m sure of it.
Cheers to ten years! My big love, my dearest friend.