|31 July 2020
When I look at all the framed photographs of family, and otherwise, on the walls of my Kitsilano home, I get this rushing thought that it all happened in the past.
It is all about a life lived.
Rosemary and I lived together for 52 years. This means that my life lived with her was 62% of my life. That is a lifetime.
When we were having money problems I would tell Rosemary that I hated to go to Canadian Pacific Limited retirement ceremonies. She would look at me with an expression that said, “Alex you have to go. We need the money.” In one of those, the retiring man who had been given a rocking chair as a gift, confessed that he had hated his job of 40 years but had appreciated the people he had worked with. That job was behind him. A job jar from his wife was waiting for him in his home kitchen.
Unlike that CP man I have lived a life with gusto in a job I have appreciated. But now with Rosemary gone, that sense of purpose of a life lived that was shared, is no more and I feel lost at sea.
I am kept dry (almost) on land by my two cats. And yet it is difficult to not think that my life as it was is all over and that it is behind me. Whatever present purpose I may have is of no consequence.
And so I live every day almost imagining that Rosemary will
come down the stairs to the living room, or that she will nag me to change the cats’
kitty litter. Her absent presence is there all the time.
It is this imagination attached to a life lived that will no longer return that keeps me making attempts to find a purpose to keep on.