its been a pretty reflective time for me lately. things in my personal life have changed and i am spending a lot of time alone again. naturally, i often go over everything that happened, and process it, and try to get an understanding of my life and my current position.
if i look at it objectively, i am healthy and strong and still young (enough). i live in the best city in the world, i have a good job with lots of potential, and am surrounded by family and friends. i have outdoor and other pursuits that i thrive on – mountain biking, bodyboarding, trail running, golf, yoga, swimming, that help me develop and strengthen myself. i have artistics passions like writing, photography and music that help me to explore and express myself. but, people who get close to me know that inside i am still in pieces and not ready to be close to someone. even if i wanted to be.
today i had to go to the hospital where mel and i spent so many days, for a physical and fitness test (by the way – very fit and the most flexible man they had ever tested there, go yoga). while there, i walked into acacia ward which had been her hard home for long stretches. just walking down that corridor, those overwhelming feelings poured over me again. the enormous concern, care, compassion, worry and most importantly, love, that filled me and tore me in every direction for so long, getting more and more extreme until everything just exploded and collapsed and she drew her last breath while i held her in my arms.
there was a feeling it touched in me, that reminded me of an expression on mel’s face once, in the summer at the end of 2007 when we went on holiday. we knew that when we got back we had to go to the gynae, that something was wrong, but we had no idea yet what it was. but she was worried, it was on her mind, and you could see it in this picture.
of course, mel was not someone to stay morbid for long. the next morning was sunny and we went for a walk up the mountain, and look how lovely and natural she looked up there. it was interesting, as this holiday was a year into our relationship, and i was wondering how she would enjoy it out with me in nature. she loved it, i loved it, and it brought us closer. she also gave me a present for that christmas, a light-hearted book about love, that she had put pictures of us into and scribbled on her own narrations and captions. i remember it stunned me to realise how much she loved me at that stage already, i almost didn’t feel deserving of it. the next year, she was in hospital and i brought her the same book, updated with pictures of mine and my own captions. we had grown together, and my love was as full and fierce as hers.
there was never a dull moment with her around. the photo below a few minutes later is a good example of that. i always have a stupid grin on my face in photos with her, but can you blame me? she knew how to serve up absurdity when it mattered most.
yo know, it is normal to go back over things in your mind, and wonder if you could have done it differently, better. given more strength, more support, connected more closely. i received a lot of mails from people around the world, about mel and her life and her passing, and the impact on them. i received quite a special one lately, where the lady said: ” you have done the most beautiful thing I have ever seen one human being do for another “. that warmed my heart, and reminded me that the bits that weren’t perfect were 2-3 % and the overwhelming majority was very perfect. all i did for mel was what she did for me – we accepted and loved each other and did everything we could for them until fate split us on this planet, taking one and leaving one.
and that is a very profound experience to have been a part of, and then to continue with your life and live it to the fullest, rebuilding it so that it is complete, yet so very different.