He always said all the leaves would be fallen by his birthday.
On the day before what would have been Philip’s 71st birthday, I finished reading my book (sounds so narcissistic!) for the first time. I mean reading it all the way through without my critic’s eye and editing pen in hand. It’s been a surprisingly good few days of reconnecting with myself and with Philip. It’s given me another go at reflecting on who I’ve become …who I’m becoming after three and a half years of time and tears.
As far as the book itself, I’m greatly relieved to find that I am pleased with it. (Not counting the endless little changes I would make … ad infinitum … ad nauseum!) I have my intrepid editor, Molly, to thank for the cohesion and flow. The book pretty well says what I’d hoped it to say and reads as I’d hoped it would. This is a gratitude and satisfaction I’ve never known before. A tangible work begun and completed.
But I’ve also had another somewhat unexpected reaction. I wrote the book following an impulse to share what befell Philip and what transpired within me in the months, weeks, days, and hours before Philip’s death … and, then, afterwards. At that time, I particularly wished family and close friends to better understand what had happened. Now a desire to share with a wider, unknown audience has arisen. I long to extend the reach of the book, to offer it as support to others who are grieving – hoping that it may provide moments of reflection and opportunities to voice the multitude of emotions and conflicts that come with this uncharted territory. I find myself wishing this book to be of service. And I’m wondering how I might do that. Any thoughts would be greatly welcomed and appreciated. Written and given with love today…on Philip’s birthday.