I can remember her that day, a twenty-four years old girl. She was standing in front of one of the hospitals in the city she lived in. She was called by her chief from the newspaper with a question about how things were going. Ania said her fiancé is dying. In response, she heard the assurance of the space and time she only needed.
It was at that moment that Ania realized that all she had left were relationships. It was people who carried her for weeks and months later, for black days with pauses in breathing. Even people who didn’t know what to say. They were there too, and that was enough.
There were no plans or dreams. Work – one or another – it did not matter. What I am going to wear today, what I will read tomorrow, did not occupy my mind. Even coffee in some nice place brought me nothing, although it worked most often on sad days. But those ones weren’t just sad. They brought a loss which took my now and took my tomorrow.
I remember when K. bought me flowers on our way from the hospital. I remember the first night on their couch in the living room. I remember calling A. I could only talk to her, because she was not afraid. She was not paralyzed by the magnitude of my loss, she simply spoke about it. This simplicity kept me from falling apart. I remember dinner at M.’s and evenings with G. All messages full of love, with no response from me, which sometimes I still discover on my phone.
Don’t feel sorry for me. I am whole for a long time now. But take a look around.
People stay after them. And those who left need a couple of words, silence, to sleep on the couch without explanation, good tea, a hug, or dealing with a small matter that now overwhelms them. They need someone who will meet their selfish needs. Maybe there is someone around you who still cannot catch the breath after his or her loss. Who cannot get up in the morning by himself after the hole was made in the heart. And maybe you can go there?
This is the sentence which comes back to me often – not my words, but my heart. Don’t put people off until later. I want to live this way. Maybe you would like to as well.