I Won't Give You Up

I must start this post by confessing something: I am not a particularly spiritual person. I’m cynical by nature, which makes it hard for me to have a particularly spiritual approach to anything that happens in my life. It’s something I’ve tried to shake for years, but not very effectively.

But then, you see, there are the dragonflies.

Before Roxy died, before everything collapsed that August, we had prepared her room. Terra had wanted a dragonfly theme. There was dragonfly décor everywhere. Dragonfly blankets, dragonfly baby clothes, dragonfly pictures, dragonfly room. Everything, dragonflies.

Then she died and two years ran over us like a combine. We sold our house and moved.

Our new house had an expansive yard that tickled woods on all sides, but there was enough open space for a large garden. I’d taken up gardening the summer before, and found it to be a peaceful exercise in a time when I’d never more desperately needed some peace. I marked out a plot for the garden that was about 900 square feet. I built a fence, planted cucumbers, tomatoes, green beans, etc., and I made it Roxy’s garden. I built what I would refer to as a “rustic” arbor entrance with a sign that said “We Love You Roxy Jean.”

That summer, unlike any other, the dragonflies came to the garden in swarms. Every time I walked into the garden, they were everywhere, all around me. I felt Roxy there, that summer, in that garden, in a way I could never explain in words. The pain that I felt from losing her was something I appreciated in that garden and I wanted to keep it. That’s what this song is about: keeping my pain instead of trying to escape it. Since that summer, dragonflies have continued to make timely appearances in our lives.

The bees swarm the edge of the tree line where you’re kept
Where the peonies rise up
The dragonflies dance that put me in a trance
And I go sweetly to the dust
Where I always get stung
I always get lost inside you honey
But I won’t give you up
No I, I won’t give you up
I guess you’re written in my script
I go shitty ‘til I split
Into some guillotine tonight
Some place to kill the fight that rises with the sun each morning
And dies out with the light
I should have memorized
I cannot recall the color of your eyes
But I won’t give you up
No I, I won’t give you up
No I, I won’t give you up
No I, I won’t give you up

Has losing a child increased or decreased your spirituality? Are there places or things that cause you to feel your child's presence since they passed away?