Thursday, August 13, 2009

At the Beach Today

Peter W. and I had a relaxing swim at Turtle Beach on Siesta Key today. On the way home, Peter was saying he was feeling really happy, and how much he enjoyed being with me. I was relaxed and happy, too. However, inevitably in the car on the way home, our conversation turned to Leif, how we were feeling, how much we had wished for him in life. It's the recurrent theme of our lives now. We are rounding some kind of corner, where we are able to enjoy things, enjoy being together, but the undercurrent comes back, the loss that stands in the background.

Peter asked me if I still cry every day. I told him I do. Not always a lot, though sometimes more than others. He said he wished he could take that sadness away. I said, the sadness isn't mine alone, and he acknowledged that was true. He asked if I talk about it with anyone, and I said no. He said, you just keep it private? Yes, pretty much so, except for some times on this blog. Although anyone can read it, it seems impersonal when writing it, like a diary, and so it's easier than to actually talk to someone, when I might break down in tears and embarrass myself. Here, no one sees.

We talked about how we wished we could have taken him to dinner with us, remembered the beach vacations we had with our boys, talked about how we wanted to take Leif on another cruise with us and now will never have that chance.

We had such good years, such a good life, Peter W. and I with our boys. How fortunate we were. Even now, with Leif's death a shadow over us, we are so fortunate to have each other, to have Peter Anthony and his family, to have had those wonderful 33 years with Leif. No, they weren't all wonderful. They weren't without problems, but they are the problems of normal, everyday living, which, in the end, is all we have and what we must treasure.

The photo was taken of Leif at the swimming pool near our townhouse in Charlottesville, Virginia in June 1977. He was not quite two and a half years old.

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