Is it only me, or do you also feel that life is full of patterns and leitmotifs that we can only see clearly with time and distance? Laura knew I loved spoons (and yes, spooning!), so she tried to woo me with her spoon collection on our second date. Over lunch, she whipped out of her handbag two beautiful etched and gilded 19th century spoons. I was dazzled, especially by the one (pictured above) with the beautiful hand wrought calla lily on its handle. It was love at first sight. Calla lilies are my favorite flower. Afterwards Laura teased me that she won my heart with that spoon. She might be right.
This week, unpacking some of Laura’s boxes, I found two more calla lily spoons that Laura had bought after that date. I also found some notes stating that the calla lily spoons were among her favorite things. Calla lilies bookended our relationship. They were there at the start, and in the most extraordinary way at the end. On December 6, 2013, on Laura’s last trip outside, we went to City Hall to get our marriage license. We celebrated by buying a little bunch of purple tinged white calla lilies. They were our miracle flowers (see post Lilies, December 30, 2013). Two of them survived for 5 weeks until the weekend before Laura died. I would come home from the hospital at night and see the two lilies entwined and propping each other up. It was like a metaphor for our own final weeks together. When they collapsed on our 3rd anniversary, I knew the end wasn’t far off. Laura died 4 days later.