Tempus fugit, sed amor reliquias (One Year)

Tempus fugit, sed amor reliquias (Time goes quickly, but love remains) is misleading. Vida fugit, sed amor reliquias (Life goes quickly, but love remains) seems more accurate.

Lucy’s time on earth ended a year ago yesterday. I still think of her every day and I still love her. I know the people who love her feel the same way. I made it through this first year with a huge amount of love and support from all of you. Getting through the days has not been impossibly difficult, but they have been empty. The first year is the worst; I believe I can make it through my remaining time because of you.

Lucy and I had a very successful life together. Life threw challenges our way, such as childlessness, job changes, and tragedies, but we found ways to overcome them. “The whole is more than the sum of its parts” held true for us. Our love gave us a synergy that got us through the unexpected and made our life together a fun adventure. We defended each other, we trusted each other’s judgment, we gave each other hope, we were loyal to each other, and we stayed devoted to each other. We not only lived, we thrived. Her smile was always a motivator for me. We stayed playful and we enjoyed our time together. That playfulness, happiness, and joy kept us younger than our chronological ages because we had found our happily ever after. Since her passing, I feel I experienced rapid aging and others have confided they share the same observation. Love truly does keep one young at heart.

She had a gentle nature, a wonderful sense of humor, surprising strength, and a special love that made me a much better person, and I will probably never experience that again. Her life is worth celebrating when we can and her memory will continue to give us comfort and strength. She taught us to cherish our loved ones every chance we get and she remains part of us. Lucy made us better people by her being part of our lives. Her life went quickly, but her love remains.

I see her when I close my eyes and if I concentrate really hard, I can still feel the softness of her touch. No doubt some may believe that because of the number of memories I have of Lucy, and the number of interactions we had during our time together, the experiences are a form of Pavlovian conditioning. Regardless of the explanation, the memories of happiness and joy provide much comfort. I hope you find comfort with your memories of Lucy.

Julie, Suzy, Diane, my parents, and I got together today to celebrate Lucy’s life. We had lunch and spent a couple hours talking. Afterwards, we went to the cemetery to visit Lucy. Our umbrellas all turned inside-out from the wind, and the rain was quite cold. I think even the weather misses Lucy’s warmth and goodness. The rain is cold enough that the snow we received late last week is hardly melting, and the forecasts show even more below normal temperatures for the next week, more like November than April.

The past three hundred years have seen stunning increases in human life expectancy. Millions of people are alive today who would have perished had they been born in the 1600’s rather than the 1900’s or 2000’s. Our lifetimes have expanded from roughly thirty-five years to over eighty years in that interval, accomplishing in a couple of centuries what evolution would require a couple of millennia. Even with our lifetime extensions, our life spans are miniscule compared to some animals and plants. What is eighty years when compared to centuries? Those eighty years are microscopic compared to the billions of years our planet has been alive, or the theoretical trillions or quadrillions of years our piece of the multiverse may live. Life goes quickly, indeed.

Definitely find time to enjoy your loved ones. Hugs are such a wonderful way to convey love and affection, so make your hugs meaningful and plentiful. Our lives go by too quickly to waste an opportunity to tell a loved one you care, so please do so. Thank you for remembering Lucy!

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