To be the one left behind, the one who stayed true, the one who kept loving, is a bit like suddenly becoming a single parent. The way that I loved her, the way I learned to love the world through her, the world that we co-created through our love, is a living breathing being to me. A child. Not of flesh, but of dreams.
She does not have to die because Mom left. She is a beautiful child who deserves to live. There is enough pain and injustice in the world without children being sacrificed for their parents selfish decisions.
I must now learn how to take care of our child, how to feed and nourish her until she is strong enough to leave on her own terms. I will tend to our dreams and keep the fire burning, for this child is the most sacred experience I have ever known.
Everything we dreamed together, everything I fell in love with because I was in love with her, must live. There is a place and time for severing, burning the house down, and moving on, but it is not here or now.
Mom left, but you get to keep breathing, growing, and dreaming. May we find the strength and courage to continue saying “yes” to life, even when it is the most difficult and painful way.
Printed in the collection, “Small Black Tent: a hymnal”