“What broke your heart” was the next prompt that I found in my inspirational and challenging book of things to write about. For the sake of spontaneous thought, the first event that broke my heart was the assassination of President Kennedy. His politics or mine don’t matter at all. He was the president whom the American people loved and his sudden death was a tragedy of huge proportion.

Several years later, a man broke my heart. He was my first love and while he stated that he still loved me, he had to terminate our relationship in order to devote all of his time to pursuing his law degree. Was that a convenient excuse or was it the truth? I continue to wonder but not very often. While I have experienced the ends of other relationships, none was as heart-breaking as this one.

Moving from my childhood home also broke my heart. My cherished memories were all there, from the dark and scary basement to the single bathroom that I shared with my four family members. The knotty pine of our breakfast nook and the huge backyard were sacred spaces for me.

Seeing my son leave for college and my daughter for New York both broke my heart. Both events represented the end of closeness and the indescribable bond that I shared with both of them. As I visualized as both exits occurred, they would never live within my vicinity again.

And there was the goodbye with my precious grandson when I left for the airport to return home. He couldn’t completely understand why I wouldn’t be with him tomorrow and began to cry. Making him cry is the absolutely last of my intentions, particularly because I was as sad as he was about our separation.

While there was no postscript to the prompt such as, “What healed your heart,” I will make certain that my next choice is decidedly more upbeat. In the interim, I am grateful for the capacity to feel as profoundly as I do about this toddler’s tears. Shalom.

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