Mother’s Day

Bittersweet day.  A very difficult day for the family.  For my sister-in-law, it is loving the children that are here, but mourning the one that she lost.  For me, it was acknowledging how big of a part my husband played in making Mother’s Day an ‘event’.  This year it seemed as though the two of us hit the crazy zone at the same time and were absolute nut cases going into Mother’s Day.

I know I was a little crazed.  I didn’t really even want to celebrate the day.  I went to bed the night before thinking about how hard it must be for many people, not just for me.  For those women who had lost children, women who never had children, women and men who never knew their mothers, or who had and had never liked them, for those who suffer or suffered abuse at the hands of their mothers.  This ‘one size’ day of celebration could be a nightmare for many.  Fortunately I woke up to the smell of eggs benedict and sausage cooking, an effective way to banish such thoughts!

Through the years Mother’s Day has typically been an awesome day for me.  Because I had my children and their father to make it special.  With Kevin gone it has lost a lot of its lustre, it carries a tinge of sadness that it shouldn’t. Now, what I hope is that my children, each with their own spouses, will make each and every day special for them, for their partners and their children.  Look to their future, love what they have.  I loved what I had and I am thankful that I had it.  But now for me, as to Mother’s Day as an event, meh, I can do without it.

A Question or Two

It’s odd how few people feel comfortable asking the things they really want to ask.  It takes a brave person to do so.  I mean, how often have you been in conversation with someone and in the back of your mind you have a question you would so love to ask, but you know it would likely be overstepping the bounds of good taste, privacy, or appropriateness, and so the question goes unspoken.

Interestingly, last week I had a conversation with a woman who dropped the pretence and asked me some of those questions.  It caught me off guard, but nevertheless, I answered her as best I could.  By way of background, she is married, does have children, and whether her marriage is ideal or not, I don’t know – I don’t  know her well enough.  Maybe that’s why she could ask me those questions.

She asked, “What do you miss the most?”  I answered, “A number of things, intimacy will always be high on the list, but there are so many other things.  Having a warm body to snuggle into when I am cold, exchanging a knowing glance about someone or something absurd, the warmth and banter of debate and discussion, silent companionship, having a reason to rush home … so many things.”

She asked, “What do you find the hardest.”  I answered, “Simply adjusting.  Sounds like a cop out but it’s not.  The adjusting never seems to stop.  I had to adjust to living alone, to living on less, to looking after everything – and I still am.  It all takes effort, and it gets tiring having to work at things especially when you don’t have the energy or inclination to do it.  The hardest thing for me has been adjusting: physically, mentally, emotionally.”

She asked, “Don’t you find it less stressful only having to worry about yourself?”  I answered, “It’s not that simple. I still worry about my family and friends.  I especially worry about my family; because I have had such an intense loss, it feels like at any time someone else could be wrenched from my life.  That sense of grief is indescribable, and as close to unbearable as anything I’ve ever faced.  So I do still worry.  Is it less stressful being on my own?  Sure, in some ways.  I don’t have to factor in another person’s views, needs, feelings, calendar.  It’s just about me, so that’s easier for sure, but I don’t consider this a glamorous or desirable state, because I didn’t ever want to be here.”

She asked, “Would you ever join a dating site?”  I answered, “If you are asking –  have I joined one, then the answer is no.  And, for the future, I can’t see me joining one.  Right now I’m not looking for a relationship, and I have plenty to keep me busy.  I’ve heard so many stories, and from people I know, about the predators on those sites, chatting you up and then asking for cash.  It just isn’t worth it for me.  I know that there are some good, strong relationships that can come out of them and so they serve a purpose for some, but just not for me.”

She asked a few more questions but the conversation ended pretty soon after with me gently admonishing her.  “The grass isn’t always greener – just like the saying goes.  I bet your life is a little chaotic right now and by comparison mine looks pretty good.  But trust me, I’d give so very, very much to have that chaos back.  Don’t wish your time and love away.”

And I didn’t cry once through the whole conversation.

do I?

I haven’t been very faithful with this blog in the last little while. I am struggling with whether to keep at it or not.  Not for any other reason than I feel that people probably think I should be moving forward, getting on with my life and that I am just a complete whiner.  Truth is, I don’t really know how and where I should be in the ‘recovery’ process.  Some days I feel like I am on the up and up, and then others I revert back to wondering how on earth I am going to get through a year, two years, five years – the rest of my life without Kevin.

For any who knew me, he was my life.  I was one of those women who centered my world around my husband.  He was demanding, busy, entertaining, always, always planning the next trip, dinner, visit, painting, gig, whatever.  My job was logistics and so I was busy too.  What an insane void his death made in my world.  And so I do wonder about my future.  I don’t have any desire to replace Kevin, who could?  But then life stretches out indeterminately without him.

Back to the blog – I don’t know if I should keep writing, I wonder if maybe it has me mired in pain – if it is a link to sorrow and that link may be holding me back.   Although I don’t think it is for the simple reason that this blog is just an outlet for expression of the feelings I continue to carry.  I can stop the blog but I can’t stop the feelings.  Sometimes it feels really good to put it in a sensible form of writing to clear my head.  Better than using a diary, since one doesn’t have to even attempt to be objective or reasonable in the expression captured in a diary.

I apparently break all the rules of a good blogger though.  I don’t write something every day, I pay to keep advertisers off of my site, and I don’t use the tools they provide me to drive traffic to my blog.  Happenstance is how people have to find this thing. That’s fine by me, since I can’t figure out why I even write it anymore.

 

Again

So it has come and gone again.  The anniversary of Kevin’s death.  Year two in the books.  Not easier at all.  I don’t know if it was harder, but I do know it wasn’t easier.  This year Easter fell similar to the year he died.  Kevin died on the Sunday before Easter.  I pushed to have the funeral on the Thursday before Good Friday.  Deliberately so it wouldn’t wreck anyone’s long weekend plans.  It likely/probably did, but at least they didn’t have to go to a funeral on one of their days off.

This year, just the way it fell, I found it hard going into the weekend.  And it wasn’t just me, his sister, my kids, we all felt it.  The memories sit in your heart and hurt with each beat.  But more than ever I realize that this is it, what I have now is on me, and I need to appreciate what I have.  This is what Kevin fought for, why he went through chemo, what he was so desperately trying to hold on to.  Life: to watch his grandkids grow up, to enjoy his family and friends, to explore, create, attempt new things.  To see and to be; to wring every bit of enjoyment out of every single day.  It’s all right there for anyone who wants it.

So, I just have to figure out how to want it.  So far I am not applying myself very well.

 

One foot in the present, one foot in the past

I think about the challenge it is to have a long term relationship end.  In my case it was my husband’s death, for others it may be divorce.  But loss is loss, and who’s to say how it should be, what one should feel, how one will cope. The thing is managing the memories.  Memories that weave through families: in children, in places, in events.  They are invisible, those ties, strands of emotion that can tangle you up before you know it.

I was worried after Kevin died that I would forget.  Forget the times we shared, the life we led, his voice, his laugh, his presence.  I realize now that I will never forget.  The ties are just too strong.  I’ve mentioned before that I hear him in my head, and I do.  Sometimes not loud enough, sometimes too loud.  Just like in life.  Last night I had a dream and I woke up knowing he had told me to do something.  But I couldn’t remember what it was he told me to do. If it was important then I suspect that he’ll be back to remind me tonight. I’d  better put paper and pen beside the bed because I don’t want to piss him off by forgetting again!  (It’s humour folks, I’m not losing it.)

These next couple of weeks will be tough ones.  Our anniversary on the 24th, his death on the 29th.  I find myself flashing back and forth between the present and the past.  Unavoidably.  I never would have ever thought he would have been my past, that wasn’t the deal, and yet now he is.  But he is still my future, because life with him made me who I am, because I will always know how he thought and what he felt.  Because the lives he and I created together continue to grow, more grandbabies – twins.  Because he would have loved that.  So I send you my love Kevin, and I say: ‘How I wish, how I wish you were here….’