Loosing someone to violence is something that one never really overcomes. Not really. The emotions are swept under the rug or tucked away in the back of the mind hoping that the impact will just fade away with time. For the most part it does.
Then a song plays or a breeze touches the cheek in just the right way to stir an emotion regardless of how long ago the time.
It has been almost 31 years since I lost my husband to murder. Wrong place, wrong time was the basic outlook of most. There was much more to it then that yet to move on with life, I had to accept the words offered by those around me.
As a song streamed from the CD player (yes I know I am behind the times, yet I have stacks of CDs and love many of them. Each morning I pop a CD in and begin my day with a bit of music) the rhythm gave me the sensation of the roll of the water as the sailboat would slip through the bay when John and I sailed. I could feel the salt air breezing by my face and almost could smell the sea. It brought about a huge rush of longing. Of emotion and to have just one more sail slipping so beautifully across the water. No other sound then the boat moving gracefully through the roll of the water and the beautiful wake flowing behind. The sails full, the seagulls flying happily behind in a gleeful follow.
Those were the best times. Times of which I have tried to repeat yet have yet to be able to find that same tone. That same sense of peace. That same breeze.
I suppose like all people who endure a loss especially one a result of violence there is that one memory that stays and stays yet also comes and goes as life has to move forward. It is that one memory that we long to recreate. We long to have one more time or actually if we are honest, many more times.
I wasn’t a sailor when I met John. It was his kind of test of people though whether or not they took to it. If they didn’t then I guess they were left at the shore forever and the others who meshed with the sea, were kept. I immediately took to the entire notion. I loved the environment. I loved the purity of sailing. No nasty buzz of a motor polluting the water. No nasty odor of the engine. No intrusive noise. I grew to love sailing in all types of weather and the beat of the sun or pound of the rain became pure joy.
We sailed beautifully together once I learned the ropes…and ropes it was. We developed a dance with the wind. A dance together as a duo sailing the sea. As I look back we were probably from a distance rather elegant looking. The rhythm of our movements each knowing what to anticipate and each taking the next move to send the boat up with the wind.
I have sailed with others and enjoyed it yet I have yet to find that purity of sailing that we had. I sailed with a wonderful woman who was so kind to take me several times after John passed. She was an excellent sailor having participated in racing off the coast of Connecticut. She indeed knew her boat and the sea. One would perhaps have called her an old salt however she wasn’t old just an extremely experienced and good sailor. It gave me comfort to be with her on her boat yet it did not achieve that realm of joy.
Another time I sailed with a guy from Norway who claimed to have crossed the Atlantic in his boat which was a tattered piece of junk. Barely seaworthy in my mind. He was an absolutely awful sailor. He had no sense of the wind, nor any common sense at all. One time we ended up in the shipping channel. A huge tanker was approaching, blowing its horn loudly telling us to get the hell out of the way. He wrung his hands like some panic child who had wet his pants and was doomed for a scolding.
Our lives were at stake and he had no clue what to do. I began barking commands at him and fortunately we were able to raise the sails and just in the nick of time catch the wind. As the tanker slipped by us, we rocked like a bobbing bowey. I never sailed with the guy again.
Yet I love the thought of sailing and as the music played on this morning those time came clearly back. Yet not really back. Just the sensation. But oh to have those days back of sailing so peacefully would indeed be glorious. To feel that salt breeze across the face. To gently rock with the flow of the sea slipping under and around the boat. To see the sails full on with the wind…..oh those glorious days. Those ever so glorious days.