The day that I met Dan, I had a feeling...before I saw his face walking towards me at the gates of Columbia- I looked up at the sky and asked God in a very dramatic fashion that whatever was going to come of this relationship, it would bring him honor. The afternoon was pleasant- nothing miraculous. You bought my sandwich at Hamilton's and a bottle of grapefruit juice of which I only finished half. So when I got home with that bottle- I decided to wash it and keep it and tell our child(ren) it was the first thing their father ever bought me. This was the first day I met you.
The bus that drops off commuters in front of our building comes every five minutes during rush hour, but I would only get up once, go to the window and pull back the curtain when I heard the brakes of the bus screech it to a halt. That was the time when, sure enough, you were coming off the bus and and I could recognize your silhouette and your manner of walking from the window.
Many times, I'd pick up the phone to call you and at that exact moment, I'd see an incoming call from you.
Despite how different we were as people, there was a synchronicity- a knowing.
The writer of the book I'm currently quite enchanted with, Catherine Marshall, writes about this synchronicity in the book about her own young widowhood in the early 1950's:
"And then I thought of an incident that had taken place seven days prior to Peter's death. He and I had been visiting friends in a nearby city. Their guest room had twin beds. Some-time after the lights had been turned out and we had gone to bed, long after the house was quiet, suddenly I had put out one hand toward the other bed, and had found Peter's hand stretched out in the darkness waiting for mine.
He had whispered, 'How did you know that my hand was there?'
And I had answered, 'I don't know. I just knew.'
So now the space between us was wider, much wider- greater than the distance between any twin beds. It stretched all the way across the eternities that divide the world of the seen from the world of the unseen. Somewhere out in that emptiness an outstretched hand was waiting for me."
I desperately want to believe that I could have this kind of cosmic intuition, but much like Catherine says as she continues on in the chapter- I only feel emptiness now.
Not what, but where is faith? It is not feeling. It is not intellect.
It is a way of perceiving like sight- which is why we hear the words, "Walk by faith, not by sight." It is a sense beyond the five we know. Perhaps there will one day be many more.
I sit and hold your iPhone close to my ear- playing some of the voice notes you recorded- your interview with the Korean soccer player, some melodies that you sing for 12 or 52 seconds.
It's only been three months- your voice is familiar but I can feel you already slipping away. When I imagine you coming inside the bedroom door or sitting at your desk, I can't quite get the size of you right anymore in my mind- how tall you are- where your head would be from the top of the chair. It saddens me. This must be just the very beginning.
I feel as though there is an imaginary line on the rug in my bedroom beside me now. It reminds me of the African American tradition of jumping over the broom. If I jump over into faith, possibly God will be there to greet me and take me on the rest of my journey. If I step over and it is true, then even if I fear that journey taking me further from Dan- if Dan is in the presence of God and I am as well- then it is really only taking me closer...but if I stay on this side of the line- then I stay in this dark grief with little hope. If I am correct, my prize is dwelling in grief. If I am wrong, I have lost the love of my life all over again. I have believed for many years, but there is something now at stake greater than my own salvation...there is love. If I step over, I must not expect to find feeling or logic- so what will I find that I don't already have? I am curious.