A dear friend of mine buried her husband last week—the father of her children, the household provider, the man she dreamed with and planned with and told her secrets to. The man whose 1,000-watt smile made hers shine as bright as the African sun at high noon.
The love of her life.
Her heart is absolutely shattered—as are those of all her friends. Because we know what he meant to her. The pain of his loss is visceral. Searing. Late at night, when she and her man and their children are on my mind, I can hear her crying out. And my heart breaks all over again. For her. For him. For them.
I have no pretty words to make it all better—can’t find the nouns and verbs and adjectives to console. Because what has happened is an ugly thing. Something that’s hard to look in the face and take head on. Something that requires much more than the obligatory, “He’s in a better place now,” or “You have your beautiful memories to hold on to,” or the command to “be strong.”
He should be here.
And though memories are great, having her man here, in the presence of the living—to love and to hold and to cherish and to be with—is just better.
And being told to be strong in such a time of incredible vulnerability just seems so… so… trite.
My dear friend has the right to her anger. And her incredible sadness. And her deep wanting.
For things to be as they were.
With her family intact.
Ha’ mercy, I have no pretty words.
Just open arms and a shoulder for the leaning.
I love you, Jamilah.
Thomas: Soar with the angels.
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