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The Clock With No Hands

The Clock With No Hands


Every Sunday morning at church, people are invited to come to the altar to receive a blessing for births, birthdays, adoptions, graduations…and anniversaries. While I enjoy seeing the joy in the eyes of the blessed, this remains a kick-in-the-head-by-the-hind-leg-of-an-ass reminder to me that I don’t have anniversaries in my immediate future, or my intermediate future, or any future I can foresee.


Every week it forces me to reconsider how it felt to have my life come to an abrupt end; “abrupt” is not really the appropriate word, and neither is “sudden”.  My life ended as I would expect the lives of those-whose-parachutes-didn’t-open end, one fearful foot at a time, one endless second followed by the rushing of time. I do not recall seeing my life pass before my eyes, but I do remember the feeling of all of creation collapsing around me as she died. The stars, scaffolding, bricks and mortar of God’s complete creation crashed in a soundless, catastrophic heap in her last breath. Soundless, vacant darkness is all I remember. My impotent life, my inability to save her is all I remember, and this is how it remains.


Sunday will be the sixth month anniversary of my entrance into the abyss. Time flies when you’re going nowhere. I kick my own butt that there are so many of her belongings yet to remove from “our” house, then I remember that I don’t want to remove a damn thing because it lessens “our” house.


I dance between deep sadness, great anger, and occasional uncharacteristic anxiety. How is it that I could be strong for her, but so weak about meaningless moments in my own? Yeah, what a guy, what a catch for some lucky woman, remembering to put the trash cans out creates stress in me now. Some warrior you must have been, old, bald, fat man.


But then I remember something else, something that makes the whole of this waste of time my life has become make sense.


She made me better.  From our first second together to our last second together I was who I was because of her, and because I would not let her down.


These hours I waste breathing now have no cause or purpose, no nobility worthy of sacrifice, no meaning. These hours have no beginning, no end, no cost, and no value.


Time has no meaning. This existence is outside of time, but the cruel fact is that I find myself sitting watching a clock with no hands. Six months has passed as a second, and longer than a life sentence.


Am I serving a lifeless sentence?





One Response to “The Clock With No Hands”

  1. Sharon Johnson says:

    I didn’t know Carole, but have listened intently to your description(s) of her. I have often been inspired by her chutzpah and YOURS! I solemnly believe she would kick you square in the ass for this posting. I may not have any business expressing my opinion, but you know me, I’m no candy-coater. Hugs to you Bob and believe that serving others and bringing awareness is your life now. Everything else will come into perspective. I think I’m in the wrong business.

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