My Patna’

I was fortunate enough to grow up in a loving household. I was even more fortunate to grow up with my paternal grandmother in that loving household – Ethel (her friends called her Peggy) Ouellette. Her maiden name was Williams and I called her “mom” in German – she was Grandma Mutter to my brother and me. She lived with my family for the better part of my life and for most of the times I remember. She was not only my grandmother, but she was my emotional mother and my best friend. She was who I wanted to talk to when I had an off day or a great day. Hers were the arms I wanted from the time I had the chicken pox and well after my first heart break. She was honest, for sure, and had a mean streak to beat the band. You didn’t want to hurt anyone she loved, that’s for sure. She suffered a great deal in her lifetime. We talked openly about just about everything – politics, world suffering, what she wanted to do when she got to heaven, and her darkest fears. She showed me that adults can be strong and vulnerable at the same time. She showed me that love and anger can co-exist without devastating eruption. I learned a great deal from her and continue to when I think back on our times together and the lessons she knowingly or unknowingly taught me.

She got me in ways that no one else ever did before or has since. She knew me with one look, even when the lights were out. And I knew her. When someone gets you at that level, there is no where to hide, so you cease to try and that is liberating beyond all belief or comprehension. I miss her every single day and she is forever on my heart and in my soul.

The blue chair surrounds you and your joy explodes the room in sunshine. The energy you produce fuels me and I want to be near you. Your arms wrap around me and all is right with the world. Understanding. Joy. Acceptance. I am me. You are you. This is the only place I can be those things. You are the only one who knows me. And you’re gone. You have been for so long and yet that space you occupy is still empty. The cavern you filled echoes to eternity and no amount of joy or pleasure can ever compare. I go on. You want me to, I know. You urge me to… I feel it. But I miss the smell of Right Guard and peppermint. I miss the fluffer-nutters. I miss your voice, your encouragement, your love. You are who I’d like to be. One-hundred percent genuine at all times… but I hide sometimes. It’s exhausting and without you, I’m floating on a quarter-tank and conscious of the miles to go and fearful I’ll never find another who fuels me the way you did. 

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