There he is again, the mourning dove, sitting on the wire outside my window alone, looking in while I work at my desk, as he does just about every morning. You know the sound of the mourning dove, the sad cooing as he calls for his mate. Mourning doves coo and preen each other, hunt seeds on the ground, the female dove builds a nest of pine needles; they are most always seen together.
This dove gives me comfort when he visits each morning, as if he is looking out for me, or checking in on me and I feel like Gary is visiting. These thoughts seem illogical and I feel a little silly as I go out on the balcony to get a closer look, say hello and ask Gary how he is, if he is OK, wishing for a sure sign, so I will know he is alright. I know some would think I am crazy but I don’t know how to shake this feeling that I should be able to communicate with the dove somehow.
I coax myself to sleep with wishes for peace. I wish Gary peace and hope he is finding it somewhere that’s now out of my sight, somewhere I don’t know, a place I am not completely sure exists. I wish him peace from illness, his spirit free from his ailing body. I wish him peace from the struggles of life, the days filled with work. I hope he has reunited with those he loved who went before him and that his spirit is surrounded with music. I wish myself peace and an easy sleep, through the night. I wish for the ability to let some things go, to savor good memories and to forgive those that are painful memories. I wish for a release from the almost constant anxiety I feel and for a place to feel peaceful with the ability to see a future.
The dove waits for me to step outside. I glance up, breathe slowly and make a connection. As he flies off, his wings whine and my heart sinks. Departures are always difficult.