A Lifetime’s Introduction.

“What’s your name” I asked all those years ago and you said “Sheila” which I soon turned into “Shells:” we seemed to know each other which was odd, given that we were both eighteen and had never met before. In the hurly burly of life, that was our “Jackpot” moment and so we grew to share things when life went right or wrong: sometimes the sun filled every room as when our first child was born, and at other times we felt so crushed by anxieties that we thought awareness was the door to torture; but in each other’s eyes and hearts we always found our centre and that spring of life which stops the water we drank from becoming stagnant.

Seventy- four years old, and married for most of them, we’ve faced all sorts of struggles but never without each other. Nothing was harder than losing our eldest son when he was only twenty-four, in some stupid motor accident, not even his fault, but experience teaches you things happen, and life is not always merciful or fair. You are left to deal with what must be dealt with or fall victim to your own emotions and circumstances: the choice is yours, or with us was always ours, but that was our blessing: to share all things with each other.

We came through it, mindful that our two remaining children needed the sunlight that loving parents bring if they are to blossom in their turn, and they did I like to think, although there was that cupboard we could no longer open, and that old pleasure of sitting there at Christmas playing films of our children’s early years ceased to be a pleasure and then an event: we both understood.

All in all we had little to complain of in the larger scheme of things because, without meaning to, and more by luck than talent, we got the main thing right: the building of a home with someone who shares your sense of what is real and makes you laugh regardless of the facts. Through joy and sorrow we always had each other, and that made us wealthy in that special way which brings rhythm to discordant lives. The point of all this is that here we are but you are no longer present. I hold your hand, as I always have, but life is no longer in it. You taught me everything there is to know except how to live without you.


About Peter Wells aka Countingducks

Trying to remember what my future is
This entry was posted in character, creative writing, Fiction, Life, Peter Wells, Romance and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to A Lifetime’s Introduction.

  1. catterel says:

    You have me in tears with this, Ducks – it’s really beautiful! And I think I know at least 2 couples who could have served as models for this. Very moving piece.


  2. renxkyoko says:

    * sigh * what can I say, Peter Wells ? For some reason, this one reminds me of an animated feature film by Pixar. The film is titled UP (. not sure though.) One thing I;m sure of, I bawled my eyes out. If you haven’t seen the movie, I highly recommend it. It’s a sad movie, yet exhilarating ( spelling ? ) I won’t spoil you, but you really have to see it.

    Cheers !


  3. wezlo says:

    Oh, so deeply moving.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. mikesteeden says:

    That must have been a difficult write…getting the sentiment spot on without it getting sloppy…a bravo moment methinks!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. jld169 says:

    On so many levels, the joy and the grief of life. Joy and life always win. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. kim881 says:

    Very touching.


  7. eliz frank says:

    What a powerful and poignant story of love and loss. That the couple spent so many thick and thin years together is commendable. Shells left an indelible mark on the writer, and her absence is palpable and beautifully expressed.
    Eliz ( by not so smartphone that wants me to jump through hoops to comment via my WP handle)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. gotham girl says:

    Ok…crying hear…and not how I wanted to start my day! Just kidding…I love it more to start with a laugh…but this is very very beautiful and touching. Thank you.


  9. seraph4377 says:

    Reblogged this on Dreams of the Shining Horizon and commented:
    Another simple, beautiful, bittersweet story by Peter Wells. This is my grandparents’ life. Both sets.


  10. A beautifully sensitive story, which manages to steer clear of being overly sentimental. A well crafted, intelligent piece of writing.


  11. Phew, you have me in tears. I guess I needed a good cry; thanks for providing it. Beautiful writing.


  12. Mo Galway says:

    I am brought to tears. It is so true. A life time of all that is precious and disastrous, spent to together, supporting each other. May this not be the end for the brilliant life that is.


  13. michelevenne says:

    I so enjoy reading your blog! The phrase, “that make us wealthy in that special way which brings rhythm to discordant lives”, is wonderful. Thanks for sharing.


  14. restlessjo says:

    No way to prepare for that moment, Peter. I felt this every step of the way. 🙂


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