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Location: Midwest, United States

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Matters of the Heart

I continue to be consumed by matters of the heart. Nothing “news-shattering” about that. I know no other way. But the specifics vary greatly from year to year.

I’ve come a long way in both heartache and joy since Christmas.

My (ex) mother-in-law suffered a grievous stroke in December. I’m hard-pressed to distill what that meant to me personally. Let’s just say I cascaded into deep depression for a great many reasons.

Had the story ended there, my Mother’s stroke, my emotional disintegration...well...there’d be little left to contemplate. But the story didn’t end the day my mother-in-law suffered her stroke.

Eight months have passed since the tragedy. And over the course of those eight months? My (ex) brother and sister-in-law came to my rescue. That, in itself, was not surprising. Loving hearts do what loving hearts do. What surprised me were the “outcomes.”

Months passed as I deteriorated. My “in-laws” took note. There were conversations. Notes passed back and forth. Then came acts of kindness. Then came the day when my (ex) brother-in-law (in truth, my Brother) asked if I’d like to visit “Mom.”

Yes, oh, Yes! Though trepidation cast a long shadow. I truly don’t know how I would have fared had I been met with reproach or disdain. Either reaction was possible in light of a failed marriage.


I was granted the opportunity to visit a beloved soul.

So I bought a bouquet of beauteous fleurs and traipsed behind my Brother-in-Law as we advanced up the steps to the door. I lagged behind as he rang the doorbell. Blood pounded my brain as we I tiptoed towards her...and thrust the flowers into her lap, stammering “I love you.”

I was met with a smile.

I felt healing within me.

I can’t express what it means to me to have felt both the pain and the healing.

But the story continues...

My Brother called to tell me he and my “Sister” were going on vacation. No one would be available to visit with Mom. “A good time to visit,” he opined.

So visit I did. Alone. With flowers, again, in hand. And I sat beside her for longer than I had anticipated. I tried to make her smile. Bring comfort. I wanted her to know that she is loved (even be it from a miscreant).

Through it all, because of all, I felt sanctified.

But the story continues...

Yes, indeed, there’s a whole lot more to this story. All I need are the words...

* * *


Blogger Ponita in Real Life said...

You may have difficulty voicing the words, but your heart knows all the lyrics and sings the songs of love beautifully. You are a gorgeous man, Jonas. And your 'in-laws' know that, and appreciate it.

Fri Aug 20, 01:21:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad you got the chance to see her again Jonas and thankful you have family that care about you and love you. Take care.

Fri Aug 20, 08:13:00 AM  
Blogger anna said...

I have tears still welling in my eyes from having read about this. Please, if you feel so inclined, do share more.

Fri Aug 20, 12:28:00 PM  
Blogger June Calender said...

It takes two to make a marriage fail, but you surely were not perceived as a "miscreant" by this (ex) family. Clearly you won a place in their hearts as they did in yours. Through all the pain on all sides the relationships are beautiful. Your post is moving and brave, thank you.

Fri Aug 20, 06:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This post of yours touched my heart more than I can say. I'm glad beyond words that you've shared these moments with this woman you love so dearly.

Fri Aug 20, 06:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This made me cry, Jonas. I am so glad you were able to do that. I am so glad they were able to see your good heart ♥

Fri Aug 20, 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger Cheesy said...

Healing love is such a blessing. I am feeling so peaceful knowing you are in a better place because you where afforded the opportunity to touch and be touched by a family that you are STILL a part of. Smiles are sent your way. Keep it up son... it is SO good for you!

Sat Aug 21, 06:27:00 AM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Your comments (individually/collectively) are most touching. Thank you.

The Seventh Decade challenges us to examine the hearts at the heart of things. There's lots to consider. I've no doubt I'll be lost in contemplation for a good long while.

Mon Aug 23, 11:26:00 AM  
Blogger PattiKen said...

Lovely post. I would only hope that my children-in-law feel that way about me. I dunno, somehow I doubt it.

Mon Aug 23, 10:35:00 PM  
Blogger Kass said...

This is such a tender post.

I'm in love with your use of the word sanctified.

Wed Aug 25, 07:41:00 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

Well, I'm crying too. I know all too well the feeling of grace, release, and - to some degree - relief when we realize our love is unexpectedly returned. In spite of everything.

I'm so glad you were able to spend time with her, Jonas. How healing that must have been for you both.

Sun Aug 29, 02:10:00 PM  

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