Meeting Don this last decade allowed me a mere glimpse into his full life. Loving him was unexpected, yet a synchronistic nudge to the heart—undeniable, irreversible. My spirit brightened when with him, and through him, I experienced the deepest understanding of reciprocal love, and it continued to deepen in our time together.
Don lived a vital life. He was comfortable in his own skin and held an air of assurance. He balanced a playful spirit with a depth of sincerity, vulnerability, and a willingness to connect.
Meeting Don, I noticed his true charisma, authenticity, charm and keen sense. Witty, intelligent, he oozed talent and was a fireball of fun! He’d eagerly engage in making you laugh, as if on a mission to bring laughter and joy into our lives.
Don was ever ready to serenade on his instrument of choice, had an intuitive, restorative touch as a masseur, and listened deeply with a compassionate, understanding presence. It was as if he’d clarify your inner life and do what he could to meet your needs. The man amazed me and I adored him.
It didn’t take long to see the underlying reality of who Don was. Right off, I witnessed a wise, poignant love. Curious, I asked where his deep devotion came from and how he developed such a remarkable capacity to love. “My mom Lucille and grandma Annushka,” he replied.
The warmth and tenderness of Don’s heart and soul was a tribute to the rich love he received and held for these two beautiful woman. I hold deep gratitude for their dedicated and charitable hearts, as this quality of love colored my days.
The foundation of our relationship had a sense of familiarity, deep resonance, mutual communion, a closeness of being, pleasure and fun. Not love at first sight for either of us, we developed a friendship that became strong, enlarged, and energized over time. I intimated to Don I’d fallen in love with him from the inside out. We’d refer to this as a feeling of spirit recognizing spirit in the other. We matched well; sharing a life came with ease. Don said it so well. “We have each other to wake to each morning, holding the promise of another day to share, this love, this life, the bliss, the grumpies, the hunger, the boredom, the stillness, the presencing in love, the senses filled, challenges of being in it, the fun, the work, the union.
You are, I am, Love.”
We truly participated in one another’s happiness and were suffused with grace and blessings in our time together. I once imparted that when death came to me, I now felt complete, I had found my beloved. It was sheer luck that we shared the time we did. I was, we were, lucky ducks.
Our time together was rich, full, precious and short. An old soul, Don was 57 years young, succumbing to stomach cancer. Mountain-climbing, beach-walking, bike-riding, river -swimming, cottage-building, garden-tending, guitar-strumming, healing touch-offering, festival-dancing, enjoying life up until his diagnosis, July 1st, on brother Bobo’s birthday. A brave act of faith, vulnerability, and love, Don lead a heroic journey in those 7 ½ weeks, before his passing.
His shining, brilliant, radiant soul taught and exemplified for me life’s most important lessons: how to live fully, how to love, and how to die. Embraced and enriched by a sense of grace, Donny Sandor Klein, the great love of my life, was a gift, a blessing to myself, and the many lives he touched. Thank you for revealing yourself and sharing in the experience of that beautiful gift of feeling more than you are while sharing love.
I am forever grateful you opened your wings to fly through the shifting winds of risk, that we might share love. My deep gratitude comes from the sheer gift of our time together.
Forever, forever I love you.