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February 25, 2007

The Unanswered Questions Part One

I felt the phone vibrate and dug down in my pocket. Silently I cursed myself for wearing these tight jeans tonight with the deep pockets knowing that there was little chance of me retrieving it in time to take the call. When I finally got my fingers wrapped around the phone it of course had stopped pulsating and I cursed again for missing the call. As I drew it out to check the display for the missed call there was just one word…Christiaan.  And in an instant I was overwhelmed with the conflicting feelings of anticipation and longing. When the call came in I had just set down in one of my favorite Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and I actually felt some relief that I could not return it right away. I had wanted to talk to Christiaan in the years since David died of addiction, at first out of desperation to understand, but eventually, as acceptance took hold of my grief, that desperate need for answers turned to intense yearning. But now that the long sought conversation was at hand I was not sure I could bear to hear his words.

Christiaan is a handsome young man in his mid-20s which would mean he would have been a few years older than Dave when they first met. Christiaan is a recovering addict like Dave which is what brought them together so long ago. I first met Christiaan at David’s calling. He and several other recovering addicts who attended meetings with Dave, had heard of his death in one of their Narcotics Anonymous gatherings and had come to the funeral home to share their sorrow with us and at the same time remind themselves of the lethal power of their disease of addiction. I did not hear of him again for a couple of years until I too began attending 12 Step meetings and when his name kept coming up again and again I made a silent vow to one day seek him out.

When a parent loses a child unexpectedly the tragedy is magnified by so many unanswered questions that overwhelm senses that are already numb with grief or anger or denial. If one is lucky…over time... some answers come in their own way, although one quickly learns that they are not always the resolution one sought or hoped for. Still other questions remain and many become permanent parts of the ethereal mystery of life and death.

I had some of those questions for Christiaan. What was David like in those meetings, what did he say, what did he feel and what were his hopes and his fears. Perhaps his answers to these questions might help me understand why this had happened and what more might I have done to prevent him from dying. Questions I dared not ask aloud and answers that I probably didn’t want to hear…all swirled around in my head each time I thought of how my conversation would go with Christiaan.

To Be Continued

February 25, 2007 at 10:54 PM in The Odyssey | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

February 02, 2007

Miss Me A Little

Miss me but let me go,

When I come to the end of the road and the sun has set for me,

I want no rites in a gloom-filled room, why cry for a soul set free,

Miss me a little but not too long and not with your head bowed low,

Remember the love we once shared, Miss me but let me go.

February 2, 2007 at 08:53 PM in The Odyssey | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack