Saturday, July 28, 2012

month of beauty: memories and beginnings

Today, my husband called Jennifer's husband Dennis. It's the first chance they've had to talk since Jennifer passed away.

Well, to be exact, they "face timed"—something Dennis had never done before. (If you haven't done it either and have no idea what it is: think super-easy Skype for iPhones). They looked at each other on their little screens, chatted, laughed, and checked that the other was okay, these two best friends. And at some point…well, my husband may or may not have shown Dennis some chicken poo on our lawn.

I got to pop outside (they were chatting in the back yard) and say, "Hey," and smile so wide, and say I'd lost my voice. Dennis got to say, "I hope you find it," and smile back. And I got to pass on my big love to their son, Little J. Then I left the boys to talking.

They've been best friends for 20 years.

Dennis was getting his camping gear sorted, getting ready for an incredibly important weekend. This  weekend, people who love Jennifer are walking in the Relay for Life, in "Sugartown," California. People I love and people I have never met, people who knew Jennifer and didn't, are walking together, camping together, remembering together, loving together, raising money together, being committed to something compassionate and heartfelt together.

Could there be anything more beautiful?

Dennis posted a link on his Facebook page today—to an article in the paper, about Jennifer and her role in last year's Relay, and about her precious family. It's about who Jennifer was, and Dennis, and about beginnings for him and little J. If you read the article, you will get a glimpse of Jenn's amazing nature, her incredible spirit, her positivity, her kindness and her beautiful compassion. 

Here is a little quote. It is a wonderful article. If you get a chance, do, please, read the rest. 
"Near the end, at the hospital, Jenn held my hand and said, 'The bad news is that you have to start all over again, but the good news is that you get to start all over again.' You have to deal with your emotions, but you have all this beautiful life ahead that you're going to experience. We have to get as much out of life for as many people as we can. James knows that now, and I think that's a little bit of the spirit of Relay for Life."

And tonight I dug out some old pictures, from our wedding long ago, in a little beach house just north of San Francisco. There's Dennis standing by Eric's side as best man, and Jenn and Dennis helping us prepare salads for our little gathering, and Jennifer talking to everyone. We were so happy together. As we always were.

And how could you not be? When there's so much talking and smiling and loving to do? When there are memories to build and beginnings to share? How could you not breathe in the Beauty and hold it close, forever?

from the article (and Dennis's own photos)

1 comment:

  1. So beautiful and heartbreaking. I can not imagine the pain.. Well I can a little imagine it. I know what grief feels like. Love all the memories in pictures. Beautiful, happy, smiling lovely friends...Hugs Helena.


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