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Christmas Gifts To Each Other

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To You All,

Below you will find my latest leter to my Dear Jack - I write him often - I wanted to share this one with all of you - since I was able to find an Exchange of Gifts - even for this Chritmas and all Christmas to come - buried in the events of the last year of Jacks life. Here is my letter:

My Dear Jack 12-9-05

As always I miss you so very much. Today I have decided to write you a letter and then share it with the folks on the two grieving web sites that I have joined since your death.

Last night as I was going to sleep I thought of Christmas and how I cannot give you anything - and will not receive anything from you as well. Then something occurred to me that we had exchanged gifts - and they were unfolding still during this holiday season. Of course there is the love that we always shared and is a constant gift between us – but there is something more that we gave each other during the course of your illness - and even now after your death.

Jack you endured 10 months of illness following your brain surgery and just three weeks into your illness you fell – hit your head – and the Doctors told me you were not going to make it – to say good bye. I prayed so hard for you to live - and you did – but you then had to live the remainder of your struggle with life without your sight AND a brain tumor.

During those 10 months and until your death you showed me how to live life. So many of your customers (hundreds) I grew to know very well – they became like and extended family not only to you but to me as well. Sometime I feel like you survived that initial brush with death not for yourself but because you still had an unfinished present to give me. You showed me how a person is supposed to live their life (in the present) and you provided me so many wonderful new friends some of which have continued to provide me tremendous moral support after you finally left my side. You – My Dear Jack – have given me these wonderful gifts – lessons on how to live and how to die – and connections with friends to help me survive your loss. So as Christmas approaches I wanted to thank you for not only the wonderful 27 years we had together and our love but also your final gifts – I will treasure them - and you always.

As for me I too have given you a gift this Christmas – as strange as it is – it is what you will never have to do that I give to you. For you I have spared you from ever having to endure my loss. It is the best gift I could give to the person I loved more than life – to take on this current struggle – without your assistance and presence – and for you I do it willingly. I will live my life as better person for having had you in my life and for having giving you my gift of grief – so that you will never have to partake of this meal – I do it because I love you so. My gift to you will last a lifetime - just as yours will to me.

So we have exchanged gifts this Christmas and for all Christmases to come – ones that will continue forever – just like my love for you – My Sweet Jackie O.

As you always said to me when I asked you if you loved me “More than you will ever know – lots lots” – I love you the same way.

Merry Christmas Baby,

Your John Boy

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Oh how true...and how many times I have thought it, that at least my George doesn't have to endure the pain of losing his spouse...for in that land where he is, there is no sorrow, and I am sure he is able to see me now. That IS a gift...

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