Seeking Solace

January 4th into January 5th has caught me every single year since my boyfriend died from cancer in the early hours of January 5th, 1981.

He was fourteen years older than me ~ a big enough gap ~ but still you don’t expect a fit, outdoorish, non-smoking, non-drinking thirty-seven year old to be swished away in the space of a couple of months.

I needed nature to be kind to me today as I went in search of a swan as I totally associate J with swans and always feel the need to be around swans during these days that left such deep imprints on my heart.

Garrarus was soft and soothing this morning:

Soothing Garrarus Beach, Co. Waterford
Soothing Garrarus Beach, Co. Waterford

I sensed that there would be at least one swan waiting for me out along the coast at Annestown. The River Anne is in flood and the reflections were enchantingly deep:

River Anne, Annestown, Co. Waterford
River Anne, Annestown, Co. Waterford

And a lone swan was gliding across the waters reaching down to touch the sadness that still lingers all these years on.


True love never dies


Author: socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and I love to write both non-fiction and poetry.

32 thoughts on “Seeking Solace”

  1. Love and loss also move our great poets and writers Jean and your blog with it’s lovely photos and wonderfu messages certainly rates very highly with me. I love the photo of the swan…for me, it represents the story of the ugly duckling looking for its own kind and finding them. It is a story of love, loss and reconciliation. So, I hope that as the days pass love and reconciliation move to peace once more for you.

  2. True love never dies
    it just grows older
    and wears carpet slippers
    And dressing gowns to sit comfy by the fire
    it never dies
    but dozes a lot
    and finishes your sentences
    and that sleek and streamlined love morphs in something comfy.
    With room for the children.
    It’s still love that won’t die.
    It’s just on life support now.

    1. Hello Robert, I don’t know that I’d take any credit at all. He left a legacy of love and I will always treasure that.
      I know there are probably some who feel that ‘moving on’ is what’s important but I feel that we owe it to those who had hearts of gold to hold them forever within us.

      1. Absolutely – I really think that when we do that we are in fact allowing ourselves to listen to and feel what is truly in our hearts. This is a part of what it means to have integrity.

  3. It is interesting that you make this post and shift to your new theme look on the same day. It seems like moving forward but not letting go, The surfer taking a mad challenge is coupled with the serenity of the known and familiar comfort images. What a lovely connection. Peace be unto you, and to all of us.

    1. Suz, you read me well! Blogging is certainly a form of therapy at times and, as it happened, I needed to be here at home a lot of yesterday as son was in a bad way with a virus and needed ‘Mama/Nursemaid.’
      I don’t think we ever fully let go of love that has been truly special; nor should we. This was arguably the toughest time of my life as I had to face death head on for the first time and cared for him at home when I hadn’t really much of a clue what I was doing.
      However, we have to battle on somehow and J, of all people, would have wanted me to try and make everyday special in some way or other. He was a giver beyond what most people can even dream of so I was very lucky to have known him, even if it was more short lived than we thought/hoped/dreamed it would be.

      Peace be onto you, my friend!

  4. I hope he was by your side, holding your hand, stroking your cheek and wiping any tears as you paused life to remember him.
    Daniels mum and I often remark on how hard it is to cry and show your grief in public, yet as we remember that is the time we are closest to the one we miss.
    Thinking of you. Sorry I missed your post yesterday. You were so young to experience such love and loss. x

    1. Ah thanks Tric.
      I must say that tears are never really part of this now. I think I shed them all on my family’s shoulders back in the 1980s.
      The youth aspect is one that bothers me still as I’ve come to know quite a few people who have had experiences pretty similar to mine. One of the major issues is that if you aren’t married there is quite a tendency for people not to have a clue what to do or say.

  5. How poignant and lovely at the same time. You write beautifully, Jean. The cottage with the reflection shot is amazing. And the swan story… so interesting. When my very dear friend died of cancer not quite three years ago, both her sisters and myself were visited by a blue butterfly, which was her favorite. It pretty much blew me away.

    1. Hi Elen, thanks for your kind words.
      I’m glad you like the cottage pic. It’s a cottage that has been in my life since I was born as my father took loads of photos of it in different moods.
      As for the butterfly, I’m sorry to hear of your friend’s death but it doesn’t altogether surprise me about the butterfly. I think we develop an affinity with creatures that we associate with those we loved and have a heightened awareness of their presence around us after the loved one dies.

    1. Thanks Dana.
      The white house has been there since I was a child and is full of character. It makes the place and when my father used to take pics of the scene, a white horse used to be part of the scene.

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