Friday, November 10, 2017

LoveSharred, Love Expands

I miss Sharry. She is my lost love and not a day goes by that I don’t think of her. I have learned over the past 17 months to find her in the world around me and remain deeply connected in one way or another. I feel her presence in the desert, the night sky and nature. Music, her songs and those of others, have on many occasions brought me to tears of loss, gratitude and love. JJ of course is a living gift from her where I will continually find connection to his angel mama as I see pieces of her in his face, personality and being.

I know that as my life continues these gifts of connection to Sharry may diminish in their frequency but never in their entirety and that makes my heart both ache with loss but also shine brightly with hope and gratitude. I am forever grateful beyond words to have had 12 amazing years with such an amazing person (I try to focus less and less on the bitter side of that coin, being robbed of decades). I was lucky to be in a relationship of such depth, love, friendship and connection and know that that will continue forever.

Yet I am thrilled to share that I now know love, true love, expands. I long thought and planned on being forever a monk dad who never would even consider dating or looking for someone new in my life. It would be unfair to Shar, to the new person and to me. However life, sometimes fortunately, does not always go the way we planned.

I have met a new amazing person who has not only helped me stop crying myself to sleep at night but brought authentic joy, love and hope to my life. Her name is Katie and she is a miracle in my life. We met, at work, when neither of was seeking out any kind of romantic relationship. She had no hope for small town Utah guys and I had my “monk dad waiting until death plan” in full force. When I met her for the first time I felt a slight tremor hit my soul. To be totally honest I have felt this with a handful of people since Sharry has passed and they are always people that have had a positive impact in my life in one way or another, so that was my thought that this person was going to somehow bring light and goodness to the BD3. And she has, just in a greater way than I ever could have imagined.

Over a short time mine and Katie’s supportive co-worker relationship grew into a friendship and then from that into something scary...I started developing deeper feelings for her. Katie was (and is) an incredible person; beautiful, funny, adventurous, supportive, strong, compassionate and smart. We share similar values and goals. She is a feminist who loves animals, cares about the environment, puts family first, enjoys good music and two of her favorite shows are Gilmore Girls and Always Sunny in Philadelphia (a weird combo and two of my faves as well)! Honestly, this totally scared me and freaked me the hell out. This was not the plan. I was supposed to figure out the single parent thing and meet up with Sharry in a few decades.

I talked this out with Sharry...a lot. As you might expect, it is somewhat difficult to have a clear conversation with someone who is no longer physically here so my heart and mind have had a lot of back and forth. I will share a couple of experiences though that I found somewhat profound and insightful. One of our chats came at night in the cemetery (as they often do) and when I got into my car I had my phone on shuffle with over 400+ songs and two songs came on that seemed like a sign to me. The second of which especially hit me hard, “Long live the queen” by Frank Turner. The song is one about losing a loved one and in the chorus the dying woman repeats “You’ll live to dance another day, just now you’ll have to dance for the two of us, so stop looking so damn depressed - sing with all your heart, the queen is dead.” It’s somewhat cliche among widows, but too often when “one person dies two lives are lost” and this song really drove that point home.

Fairly recently I was laying in bed and once again talking aloud to Shar about Katie. I told her how I was grateful to have her in my life but I wanted to be sure Sharry was ok with this. I then had the idea, maybe inspiration, pop into my head that “she (katie) is one of the only people who you would love who would also encourage an ongoing relationship with Sharry.”  And that is totally true. Not only is Katie amazing and well above average in all the typical ways one might find a dating partner attractive but she is truly extraordinary with how she handles my relationship with Sharry, my grief and JJ. The baby boy loves her. Already I think she has passed me up on his hierarchy of favorites.

I know people might be curious how it is to love two people, hell I would have not understood it not long ago. It is complicated and magical. Love is expansive. My love for Sharry has not diminished in the least which one might think leaves little room for somebody else but that is not the case. I LOVE Katie. She is amazing and if we continue on our current awesome trajectory I hope to share the rest of my life with her. I cannot imagine a better partner to face the joys, sorrows, wonders, adventures, trials, frustrations and magic of life with. JJ will be lucky to have two amazing moms, one angel mama watching and protecting from above and one here with him on earth loving, teaching and guiding.

I know that there are many out there who have not yet found that deep amazing love and my heart aches for them and I pray that they will find it. I know that I was extremely blessed to have 12 years with an earthbound angel and now fortune smiles again to have found Katie a literal godsend of goodness, healing, friendship and love. Sharry named this blog using a combination of our names with specific meaning, LoveSharred, I’m sure neither of us would have ever guessed how true that has become. Lovesharred has grown from Sharry, Lola (the cat) and I to include JJ and now Katie. I plan to continue this blog with the same mission that Sharry once had. I will share our love and adventures; adventures in parenting, loss, giving, love, memories, travel, communing with angels, art, family, grief and all about finding magic and beauty on this journey through life.

JJ and Lola both love Katie's attention