This morning I met the father of my children for breakfast. He brought some pictures he had found in going through some boxes and happened to find this photo with his three sons. My son was the big brother to his three sons from his second marriage but I had never seen this picture. I remember my son telling me how he would take the children sledding down a big hill and how much fun he had with his younger brothers. Later they would seek him out for teen-age advice and they played on a soccer team together.
We both became teary eyed and had to force ourselves not to cry out loud. As we were wiping our tears the waitress came up to the table but made a U-turn when she saw our sadness. She returned a few minutes later to take our order. It was a sad breakfast because he remembered losing two of his sons and his wife. His wife and our son died on the same day making it a double whammy for him. Her birthday is coming up on June 13 and that was on his mind also.
I can see that he handles her death by writing poetry and some of his words are touching and full of sentimentality. I can tell the words come from deep inside his heart. They were married for forty-six years and he is glad he has many memories of their life together, yet, it is difficult being without his partner. He mourns his wife and son, while most of my mourning is for my son.
It is good that he has two sons who watch over him and have planned a few trips with him. They have traveled to San Francisco, Peru and San Diego. He told me, "My wife is always with me, though traveling with my sons helps me handle my pain." I told him that as long as we keep those we love in our hearts, they are never gone!
"They say that you die twice.
One time when you stop breathing
and a second time, a bit later,
when someone says your name
for the last time."