Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Thoughts on Graduation

Sue's oldest child graduated from high school last night. It was so emotionally draining that I'm spending some time resting this morning. It was a wonderful night, and I was so proud. I'm not sure I've ever felt quite so proud. However, when facing happy life events, the grief is always there too.

All day yesterday I was humming a line from an old Queen song that says "pain is so close to pleasure". I understand what that line means now. I'll try to explain my pain/pleasure: 

I am SO PROUD of Sue's boy! So much pleasure! But Sue would be proud too, and she's not here to see this. PAIN. Look what he has accomplished! He has such a bright future ahead! More pleasure! But she will miss all of it. Ouch.

It's hard to put into words how daunting it is to think of all the milestones we have ahead: more graduations, first big jobs, weddings, babies, holidays. She won't be here for any of them. Not one. She never even got to see any of her kids get a driver's license. 

But here I am, watching, enjoying, being a part of her kids' lives. Why am I here and she's not? Why did her body get sick and shut down and I'm healthy? 

I don't know.

I do know that one of my biggest goals in life is to step in and feel all the emotions she would feel. I will take the pain so I can have the pleasure. 

The pain is overwhelming. But so is the pleasure.