Sunday, August 20, 2006

10a. From Mario ... "On The Run"

I’ve been on the run. For 5 years. So long, I’ve now run across the width of this here United States. Ann seems to be worried that I'm going to die soon. But with her experience, one can only understand her worry.

But let me tell you why she needn't worry about that.

To live through what I did with Isabel was a lesson in living and dying. But to not take care of myself would be to disrespect the battle she fought and ultimately succumbed to.

So while Ann fears my death, I fear not living, with respect to the battle one dear to me fought, to honor life.

Recently on a trip, a friend of ours lost her husband of 50 years. Our friendship started with her friendship with Isabel. They were colleagues, fellow writers.
When my wife was too incapacitated to hold a book or read the print, this friend would come over to the house and read every week. It was wonderful seeing them there sharing someone’s thoughts in print. It really was healing. Now our friend has lost her man of her lifetime. Now she starts her new life, again.

My aunt, who is approaching 90 years, lost her husband of 60 plus years not too long ago. She is missing his company; she is lonely for her mate. Everywhere you turn, if you choose to see it, there are people dealing with this basic fact of life.

Is loneliness the real issue here? Is there something about not wanting to be lost among one’s belongings without someone there to help navigate life?

I see it with my son, still so young but really having to deal with the hard reality of a solitary existence, and not liking it.

All these jets roaring above our heads, all this distraction, time slipping into the stream of their trails and getting sucked out of our life accounts. I’m not liking it, either. This isn’t easy. This is relentless.

So I eat well, and I exercise, and I shift over from farm-raised to wild and from gas-fired to charcoal. I do what I think is right. But they’re still going to get me, eventually. Ann hopes later, and I hope she is right. In the meantime, what we do with our time and our resources, those are the places at the table I need help setting. Don’t we all?

I will run my run, day by day, step by step, tear by tear. It’s a race I know I’ll never win. But run I will. For Izzy. For Ann. For my mom and for my son, with memories and hopes as my backwind, along the sandy shores, with the sun in my face.


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