sorrow is a sadness that stays. this is not regret, but rather the feeling of loss. we lose much as the years pass. not only might we lose some of our vitality, abilities, and mental capacities, we lose friends. we lose family...blood family and family of choice. there is a void where each of these losses once lived. there is a space that can never truly be filled to replace that which has been lost. only a shadow, a fraction, a fragment can now abide in that space. the remainder of those spaces is filled with memory.
i was not close with my mother. we had conflict unspoken all my life. and yet, now that she has been dead for almost a decade, i often think of her fondly. i might see something...a piece of jewellery (she had some beauties!) in a shop window...or smell something...a freshly baked croissant (one of her indulgences)...or feel whipped cream (one of her favourites) on my tongue and there she is! she emerges complete in the memory of my mindheart in her most joyous self. and then i feel sorrow for the imagined past, for what might have been. and then the sorrow is replaced by the taste and smell and sight of my mother’s gladness.
a woman i knew, younger than i, died a few years ago. i did not know her well, but knew her in a rich, intense context. when she died i was filled with sorrow. i did not regret knowing her only a short time. i did not miss her as a friend. and yet, there was sorrow. i missed knowing she was on the planet, contributing her spritely energy, her smile, her insight. the world lost a unique being. and i lost a connection that can never be replaced...
not even by a shadow, or a fragment, or a fraction.