Kim’s Dad is back from his sojourn in Florida and Georgia, so, after Mass, Vanessa and I (Jillian is at a pageant in Tennessee) made our way to his house to accompany him to Holy Sepulchre to visit Kim’s grave and her Mom’s grave as has been the practice since Kim’s mom passed in 2019.
Afterward, in his house, it seemed I was viewing it through AR lenses: everywhere I looked, I could see the house as it was today and as it was when Kim and I were dating and first married, so many years ago. I could see where the couch was that we would plop ourselves on after I picked her up from work on each weekend day. I could see the bedroom that was hers as it was when we were first dating, and then the one she later moved to in the front of the house. I could see her sitting in front of the fireplace to distribute Christmas gifts as was the tradition in those early days. I could see her sitting there as our children, nieces, and nephews took over the role as they grew. I could see Kim working in the kitchen with her Mom and sister at each holiday family gathering. So many memories. So much captured in the vaults of my mind.
It can be maddening at times.
A few years back, we were having a conversation regarding retirement, and how we would get along during it. During the conversation, as we were discussing the things we’d like to do when we no longer had to worry about going to work, she stopped and smiled and said that she believed we would get along just fine…
As the song says: some loves are meant to last forever. Despite the issues we had in our life together, I believe we had that. It definitely had its downs, but we weathered them. Sometimes weathering the storms was easy; other times weathering them was exhausting – but we made it through each one with our marriage intact. The ship of our marriage, a shiny, white, and sleek craft when we launched it, was battered by time and became dented, worn, and rusty – but it remained afloat, and definitely remained seaworthy. We would have been just fine through retirement if only she was allowed to experience it.