i used to imagine were i to get married what my wedding would be like. most of the time i envisioned it at a catholic church in the woodlands, not far from where i live, and because my father is who is and is so well-loved by so many, i doubt very much the guest list would’ve been fewer than two hundred people. it would’ve been big… not so much because i wanted big but because i would’ve felt a need to invite so many. more presents, right?

but what i really wanted was small and simple. i wanted to get married at my great uncle’s monastery so he could be there. and because my faith was rooted in that place. and because i wanted to celebrate on the lawn at sunset with my family. i would’ve wanted my spouse’s family to know the tranquility of that place, and i would’ve preferred that chapter of my life to begin in someplace quiet and content.
of course, the older i got the more difficult it was for me to picture this future. my twenties came and went. my thirties. i’m halfway through my forties. the older i got the more ridiculous the picture seemed to be.
and then the monastery closed last summer.
and my munkle died this week.
i broke down at work today because the thing i most wanted to give him — the knowledge that i would find that kind of love and have that kind of a life… that all his hopes and prayers for me had become reality. i couldn’t give that to him. 
an image of what that day could’ve been like came to mind so fully that i was taken aback. i gripped the counter for balance and then fell to my knees and wept.
thank god no one was in the store. no one came in while i was crumpled on the ground.
brett young’s mercy was playing. if you’re gonna break my heart just break it.

i don’t know how many more times mine can break.

3 responses to “mercy”

  1. My condolences on your loss. One of the hardest parts of grieving is realizing the things you can't do in the future with your loved one. That hit me incredibly hard when my mother and brother died. The loss of those future possibilities. Hang in there and accept sympathy from all who offer it.

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