Accepting and reframing out life together
Sorting through our mementos, I find myself crying tears of joy, acceptance, and compassion. I begin to see how life with me changed Karl, my soulmate. I find myself agreeing with Alan Wolfelt, who explains that the depth of grief a soulmate experiences demands a heroic response (When a Soulmate Dies, 2016).
My true partner
On 14 August 2016, I write to Karl:
Truly, I did not appreciate what a massive change you made in all aspects of your life when you became my partner…. We did the best we could — more than that! We did just excellent. We could never have afforded that house with what little we had — and I am not sad that we tried! What an adventure! And think of everything we learned — it will help to guide us into the future. You are my true partner in this adventure. Thank you!
I keep digging into the physical and emotional work of packing up a four-bedroom house and 49 years of Australian life.
At the end of July 2016, Karl comments:
I want you to touch every item with love, remembering the many exciting and challenging adventures we had together on this property. Remember that we chose this venture. Nobody made us do it. We chose to learn from it — and from each other. I don’t want either of us to feel like victims of this experience.
A few days later, I begin to crack under the pressure of the dramatic changes I am experiencing, including the incomplete application for the granny flat and my compensation case against Karl’s car insurer (requiring me to sign twenty complex legal documents).
An open and transparent channel
My cries bring a flurry of grateful and heart-opening messages from Karl:
You can be an open and transparent channel of love for all to see, as you experience these farewells to the life we shared. It enriched my soul and made me richer — and better. It was a good life, a life filled with love. I am so proud of us. I want you to feel that too — a real sense of accomplishment — of all we dreamed and shared and learned together. And how we came through it so well.
Closing my business
Following advice from both my accountant and my surrogate son Andrew, I finally accept another harsh reality and close my consulting business (Sarkissian Associates Planners) in mid-August 2016. That feels like the most massive loss: the loss of my precious professional identity.
Nevertheless, I write to Karl:
We dreamed a big dream. I do not regret it for one second. It might have been a madcap dream, but it was our dream.
You have buried your own Beloved. It will never be as hard as that. Now you can bask in love and joy.
While I sense that “basking in love and joy” might still be some way off, I reply:
Help me to move on, please. Please help me to love and be happy again.
Within days, a buyer for the Nimbin property appears, and I can move to Brisbane.