Going On

Yesterday I felt so congruent with everything. I wrote about impulsively sitting down beside a lovely black woman in the food court at the mall. I had no idea she was a widow or that her friend had recently lost an adult child.

Later that day, I asked Rob to get some fluorescent bulb replacements for our kitchen light. He got them but that wasn’t the problem. After Googling, he said it was more than likely the ballast. So I took a walk and once again, on impulse, I stopped in a neighbor’s house to see if he knew of an electrician.

It so happened that someone working in his house was an electrician and so he will come to see if he can fix the light today. It also happened that the recent death of the homeowner’s niece came up. I told them if the mother wanted to talk to me, I would be more than happy to listen. We had a brief conversation about the horror of losing a child. “She doesn’t want to be here,” the woman said of the mother. And I knew that feeling. Of not wanting to be here. But there are reasons to stay. In my case, I also had a son who had just lost his only sibling. He needed me, although the grief would not be lifted from either of us. It would just be compounded by the loss of my husband some years later.

Suddenly kitchen lights don’t seem so important. And yet they must go on, just as we.

Vicki Woodyard


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