I will sing you to me…..
These words curve around my lower right leg, from knee to ankle.
My 3rd tattoo. My first one says nothin’ but love, our credo in hospice. Those words swirl in a circle on the back of my neck, with the circle ending in a small heart, and the circle is left open. As my heart must be in this new life without him.
My second one simply says Love, and is on the inside of my left wrist, in the exact location where the tumor I named Wilson, first showed up on Chuck. It took a 11-hour surgery and 4 reconstructive surgeries afterwards to rid ourselves of Wilson and reconstruct Chuck’s arm. His right thigh looked like hamburger when they were through.
Each of my tattoos carry special meaning, as all tattoos must.
But…my 3rd tattoo…
Chuck and I both enjoyed watching the movie Australia; a movie set in pre-WW2 Australia, dealing both with the invasion by the Japanese, and the kidnapping of mixed race Aboriginal children from their parents. The kids were sent to orphanages where they were taught white ways.
One of the most charming characters in the movie is a little boy named Nullah, a mixed-race boy, taken in by the character of Nicole Kidman. The two are separated, in the movie, by the kidnapping of Nullah. As she stands on the pier, desperately trying to keep him with her…as he is taken away to an island for orphans, he says to her I will sing you to me.
And she responds and I will hear you…
In our Happily Homeless travels, Chuck and I visited the huge bike rally in Sturgis, South Dakota. We didn’t go there specifically for it, but it was going on when we were there, and we walked around and admired the bikes and fell in love with the state.
In the second year after his death, my daughter, Rachael-Grace, went on the road with me for 6 months, supporting me in my Odyssey of Love. We crisscrossed the USA, and, in the process, ended up in Sturgis, SD, and, again, happened upon the Sturgis bike rally.
South Dakota is home to Crazy Horse National Monument, one of the places Chuck and I visited together, and the final place he’d asked me to return to, to scatter his cremains.
Rae created a beautiful ritual at Crazy Horse, and was the one to scatter her dad’s cremains there. And then we walked around Sturgis. Which is where I found the tattoo artist who created my 3rd tattoo. I’d told him about our Love story, about my Odyssey of Love, and though I didn’t know when I first got there to SD what my tattoo would look like, the words came to me as I walked about, and he did a quick sketch. Unfortunately, the cost was too much for me to justify, and I was honest with him about that. Another of the artists, who had listened in to my story, told me that he thought I really needed to get the tattoo there…it was the last place Chuck had named, after all, and given the words I wanted, it was perfect. So, he offered to pay for half, stunning me.
I will sing you to me….
Words spoken in the movie Australia, among the Aboriginals, when saying goodbye to a loved one, with no idea whether that one will be seen again. Words of hope for the future, maybe…
I’ve no idea whether this phrase, and the concept behind it, are true to the Aboriginals or not. I honestly don’t care; the idea of the words touched my heart years ago, and they touch my heart now. And I seek comfort where I can find it.
I will sing you to me…
These words that wind around my calf speak of my wish to believe, even as I struggle with believing, that I will see Chuck again someday. Somehow, maybe, he will greet me when I die. Maybe.
Meanwhile, in this life that I must live without him, maybe I can sing him to me in my heart, by living the Love he left behind, by reaching out with kindness, in service to others.
I will sing him to me…
And the other half of the meaning of those words for me?
Maybe, maybe, maybe, I will sing my future to me even as I live each moment without him, as I continue this Odyssey of Love. The future that I still don’t want, that I don’t care about, but one that seems as if it must be lived for all the days of my life until my own death.
I hold these words to me, written as clearly on my heart as they are written on my calf.
I will sing you to me…