Even when I am alone

November 6th, 2013 § 23 comments

IMG_7108Even when I am alone
I teeter precariously over the right hand side of the bed.
On my left shoulder when I can,
When the pain is bearable,
When I can settle in for the night.

I still approach the precipice
Rather than opt for the safety of the middle place.
I act as if he is there with me
Taking space
And I, trying to make room,
Move to outer orbit,
As if that extra inch or two would matter.

Even on the occasions I am alone
I pretend as if I am not.

I go to places in my mind,
Wondering what it will be like
When that opposite side of the bed is empty
For him
And he teeters precariously near the edge unnecessarily,
Without me there to take up space.

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§ 23 Responses to Even when I am alone"

  • Laura Strachan says:

    The day after my mom died, my dad told me he’d been practicing. I asked him what that meant. He said that when he was alone in the house he’d tell himself that “This is what is will be like.” And then he’d get too sad and have to remind himself that my mother was coming home. It was heartbreaking. I’m so sorry, Lisa. Thinking of you, as always. xx

  • Kathy says:

    No words… So profound

  • Yolanda Davidson says:


  • Charlie says:

    Wow. Those lines cut deep.

    When my dad left the world my mom’s life became smaller, folded like a napkin, with sharp and deliberate corners.

  • Sandy Greenstreet says:

    Sending you love, strength, and hugs from Oregon!

  • Diane D'Angelo says:


  • Christine Winter says:

    Lisa….I can only offer my heart and understanding thoughts. I have lived/live on both sides of this road.

  • Steve says:

    It’s amazing how humans are able to feel for each other across hundreds and thousands of miles, even across time…the future, the past. Does that make us time travelers? If you can’t see me, does that mean I am not there, here or elsewhere? Loving you. Caressing you. Smiling with you. Crying with you.

  • Linda says:

    So profound and so sad. When my mom died, my dad slept in her twin bed so that he would not have to see hers empty…only his.

  • Heartbreaking and brave and beautiful. Your work is a gift from the deepest soul, to a world much in need of truth, even hard truth, such as yours. I am a most grateful and awe-struck reader. Thank you. Blessings.

  • You have a gift for making your experience become our experience.

    When my mom was in her end-stage cancer, my dad kept making accommodations for her. When their bed became too high for her (she was unable to move her legs), my father cut the legs off the bed with a hand saw. Last night he wanted me to go in their room to see some changes he made. The only thing I could see was the short bed that he still sleeps in. I couldn’t help but wonder what that is like for him. I wondered specifically if he still sleeps in “his side” of the bed. Your beautiful, insightful words helps me to understand. Thank you so very much.

  • MlleCheree says:

    For me, the dog claimed Stephen’s side of the bed and filled one of the voids. Imperfectly filled, but weight and breathing and warmth there.

  • Erin says:

    After my dad died at home, in bed, in June, my mom bought a new bed. To this day, though…she sleeps on his side. Love to you, Lisa.

  • Lisa Lurie says:

    Lisa, I wish we could have known each other–before our paths crossed with cancer being the intersection. I know we would have had much to talk about, laugh about, and ponder on. You are an amazing person…your eloquent words are a gift.

  • jh says:

    This is beautiful. But if it was me, I’d rather not know about all the people whose parents have died. It is a reminder that I do not need

  • Maureen says:

    You are the beauty I found in the world today.

  • Dear Lisa, thank you. Sending you more love, less pain, and all possible peace of mind.

  • Kate says:

    Thank you Lisa. You’re making such a beautiful gift for us who are not able to express ourselves.

  • Doreen says:

    He will always feel you there… Just like you feel him. Your strength and live are amazing!

  • Christine Tanner says:

    🙁 sad

  • Pattu says:

    The sense of loss will never leave. Getting used to it will be the test.

    Sad.. and profound.

  • Your poetry is profound and beautiful. As are you.

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