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  • Grief catches my breath and holds it in that sacred space between one breath and another for a momentary flash of memory. My 6’ 7, 235-pound, copper red-haired son, Jason, stands beside my 6’ frame and tickles the top of my head. It was “our thing.” That gesture took on several meanings over his short life. As a teen and the son of a single mom, it was his way of letting me know he was becoming a man and that my days as the major influence in his life were ending. As he grew into his prime and struggled with the demons of being bipolar, it was his way of letting me know he needed comfort. In those rare windows of time when he was not in the belly of the beast but saw the world and himself with hope and humor, it was a time to laugh. My nostrils twitch at the familiar scent of his Drakkar cologne and in the instant it takes to exhale he is gone.

    There was a time I feared my grief. I would do anything to avoid it. New grief was all about letting go. It would literally drop me to my knees with its stunning silence. In those moments I begged to eavesdrop on eternity but the universe went deaf. It was the penalty phase of my life.

    Today I welcome the grief. We are old friends. It’s no longer about letting go, it’s about remembering all that was. Grief never comes alone these days. It always brings a loved one. It’s like a cosmic lost and found. How grateful I am for those momentary sacred spaces when my world stops and I catch a glimpse of love and realize the space between then and now is an illusion.
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