Rene

I wrote this on the bus – “Romance” with some affiliation to a “garage” and “night vision goggles”. I think the romance part has potential, although with only 800 word limit seriously trimmed to meet the midnight deadline.

 

Summary: A deceased husband visits his wife Sharon to help her resolve issues in her current marriage.

___
Sharon is a widow from her first marriage, and is now going through a divorce in her second marriage. She is looking in the garage to find something, yet she cannot remember what called her to this mostly forgotten space.

Walking into the garage was a sudden and strong urge, that tugged on her hard. Now that she is standing in the midst of boxes, decades of storage, she might as well focus her frenetic energy towards addressing yet more unknowns.

She tackles the first box. Sharon has stumbled into her first husband objects, not touched or seen for seven years. Suddenly ravenous, her arms moving items this way and that, simply to gain a sense of inventory, what types of things might be in here? She finds a pair of night vision goggles and remembers him more clearly than expected, Rene has not been on her mind for so long…. Sharon is not surprised to find night vision goggles in the box, Rene was an inventor and hobbyist.

Musing over her current divorce, she realizes that the divorce feelings are equally commingled with the unexpressed, unexplored feelings after her first husband’s death. She slowly closes the box, yet leaves the goggles out, and then places them on her head.

Gazing around the room, Sharon sees the bicycle hanging from the ceiling which is now a few shades different, as are the other objects – her son’s box of hockey equipment, her daughter’s childhood workbench, so like Rene as an emerging hobbyist when very small.

“Hmmm, I wonder how these goggles work?”

She turns off the garage lights and sits in the darkness by herself. Recognizing how calm and safe she feels being surrounded by familiar objects, which belong to the people she loves while feeling  alone and then, quickly, a desire for a small adventure sparks. She begins to journey into herself. Much as hiding in a closet can give a child the feeling of safety and refuge from the confusion of adults. Sharon is now seeking this same experience from the confusion of herself.

This is where the love story comes in! No, not the self love extolled by teachers/guides of today, a Romantic love unfulfilled and even unrecognized for seven years with her deceased husband.

Sharon touches the side of the goggles and finds a series of buttons, locates the right one, Pesto! She has night vision and can see better now in the dark garage.

Her eyes are slow to adjust to the enhanced visibility, slowly scanning the garage with a softened gaze, which are now filled with stinging tears. Resting two feet away is her first husband Rene watching with such adoration and appreciation at her.

“Sharon, try not to cry with tears, there is no where for them to go while you are wearing….”

She cuts him off by flinging the goggles off her head and Rene is suddenly gone. She can no longer see him or hear him. Her heart suddenly longing, Rene’s presence abruptly gone and her heart wants quickly to fill up again.

Sharon is a sensory person. She can only feel Rene when her senses are sparked by his direct presence. Surely Rene is there now, in the darkness, yet a wall of muted sensory now blocks him from her perception.

Do you know the tension and exhaustion of unexpressed loss? Do you know the tremor and force of unspilled sorrow? It is heavy to carry. Our protagonist Sharon has nearly perfected the life of denial, a stoic refusal to admit loss. So rather than shock or fear at seeing Rene, she finds harder to admit loss.

Nearing her first act of honesty in seven years, Sharon groped in the darkened garage, and placed back on her head the goggles, switching on the right vision again.

She sees Rene once more, the same look of adoration. He slowly reaches towards her, and she grabs both of his hands with her own.

“Rene, how long will you be here? Can I see you now because of these goggles?

“Sharon, partially yes, yet I suspect there is even more to this. Your heart called me to you. I think to help you, but I don’t know what or how. I think our task right now is to hear one another and find from there what we need to do.”
True love is not affected by 7 years apart. After several hours of discussion Sharon understood what she needed to do.

Leaving the garage, after much heart counsel, she is ready to be bigger than the past, and to welcome back into her life big love. She had forgiven herself and couldn’t wait to call Frank and ask if he wants to put the divorce on hold, and try their marriage again.

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