On the phone I sang to her in what would be her last hours; the song we used to harmonize in college. Her voice was a faint whisper, but I could feel her presence. At some point I forgot the words and launched into a series of melodic “something-somethings” while laughing and crying. She tried to speak. Her voice was too soft for me to hear… so I told her to just listen. I didn’t want her to struggle.
When I got on the plane the next morning, I got word. I disembarked and sat out side in the cold air, waiting to be picked-up to return home. I could have waited the 40 minutes inside, but feeling the discomfort and clarity of the cold kept me out there at departures. Or maybe it was just feeling something that kept me. Sitting tenuously on my suitcase, the numbness filled my visible breath. And I replayed the song hearing her harmony next to my melody. Filling in what was missing.
John told me later in the day that she was smiling ear to ear through our brief conversation and though he didn’t know what I was singing to her, he could tell that she was filling in my forgotten words.
I’m not sure I will ever recognize myself in this world; this place where Linda doesn’t breathe the air. I’ve never lost like this. Maybe someday I will find a way to use these memories to fill in the hole in my heart. Maybe not. Either way, I will seek comfort in the devoted song- that will always find harmony in my mind.
beautiful and grace-filled – just like your Linda and you xx
You shared a most remarkable friendship–how fortunate you both were to have each other. How sad we are that this remarkable woman wasn’t able to share her beauty and talents with her children, family and friends for another 42 years…but we do celebrate the 42 years that Linda walked on this earth-and the 20-something years that you were part of each other’s lives.
Dear Amy, having never loss like this it is only natural that you feel the hole in your heart will never be filled. But the heart does mend, even when it never completely heals. One catalyst is the awareness that your Linda would want you to help your heart mend. Remember, she sang to you these words, “I’d be unhappy if you were blue.” As time passes, that knowledge helps us all who have suffered terrible loss to move forward as best we can. It will do the same for you. Linda would hate it if her memory only caused you pain, she would want you to smile when you think of her, just as you made her smile in those final hours when she was about to lose your sweet friendship. With time you will fill the hole in your heart with memories of Linda that make you smile.
What a beautiful friendship and love you two shared! I am so sorry Linda is gone, and that your pain is so new and raw. Take comfort in knowing you were able to share something so special over the phone, even though you did not get to be with her during her final moments.
Take extra good care of yourself in the days to come.
I just heard about this from a fellow friend who attended Blair High School with us. I’m so sorry for your loss. Thank you for being such an amazing friend to Linda.
Amy, you write beautifully. So here I sit crying away. One of the things about my MS – altho it might just be that I’m a mush – is my emotional crying side is barely under the surface. And that memorial to your dear friend is just heart wrenching. How lucky you were to have each other – and therefore how much harder it is for you to no longer have her. The people you truly connect with are such a blessing. And so rare and special. I hope you find some peace and manage each day with a little less pain.