18 months

So really what is time?  It can mean different things throughout life.  A year and a half has passed since Kevin died – sometimes it feels like yesterday, other times it feels like a totally different life.   I can recall some things so vividly, then there are others that I can’t –  I may try, but I can’t remember.  Then out of the blue when I least expect it I get hit with a wham!  Then it becomes a matter of managing the thoughts, not letting them overwhelm me. Saving the emotions for later, for private.

The summer has come to an end and it has been an eventful one.  My sister visited, cousins from England visited, my daughter and her family moved in, and before I knew it, the summer was gone.  Time passes.

As the season changes and it gets darker, it becomes easier to fall into feeling sad.  Once the snow flies and we all go into a human state of hibernation, I will do it again on my own – day after day, plod along. No one to play cribbage with or to hunker down on the couch and watch movies with – just me.  For a while I will have the kids around, but it’s not the same; nice – but not the same.  They will eventually move out, as they should, they need to find their forever home.

I may sound a little depressed, but I’m not.  I think I am a little more aware of everything that’s all.  It’s time to find some coping techniques, something to do, to be busy, maybe creative.  My world is not about to become rainbows and sunshine, but it doesn’t have to be a storm of emotions; it can be pleasant, however that looks.

 

No relief

I am sitting here doing what I wanted to do all day – crying.  Crying about what isn’t, what is gone.  I am an emotional wreck because today was the first day of school.  This would have been the first day of the new school year since Kevin retired.  That fact really hit home when I went on Facebook and saw a picture of one of Kevin’s co-workers sitting in a lawnchair in her pjs, a cup of coffee in her hand, in front of the school that she taught at with Kevin.  This was something he would have done, laughing and calling out at his friends as they went into the school.  I woke up to this image and it brought back painfully how much I loved him, liked him and needed him –  he was the centre of my world.

Unfortunately for my co-workers it also set the tone for the day. The self-talk that went through my head today was all negative.  Nothing was good enough, right or made sense to me.  It was a day where I should have worked in isolation, but instead had to interact at a level that was beyond my reach.  Better to stay silent than say anything – which is exactly what I tried to do – put my head down and just get through.  I just want this day over.  How many times have I said that in the last 17 months.  Far  too many, too many days where I’d like to pull the bedsheets over my head and avoid everyone and everything.

It’s been almost a year and a half but that doesn’t make the hurt go away; it provides the time to compartmentalize, to package up the pain and hide it away so it is not bare and exposed, but it doesn’t go away.  Like today, today it was in every thought I had.  I saw no joy today, only sorrow.

 

Happy Birthday

Not much more to say.  This would have been Kev’s birthday.  We would have started celebrating days ago when he planned out exactly what he wanted.  The kids would have all been here.  Family and friends, helping us enjoy the day.  Enjoyment for Kevin, work for me.  What I wouldn’t give to be complaining about how much work it was.

Today’s reality was it was an easy day for me work-wise, but one filled with silent tears.  Great memories, but memories that are overshadowed by heartache and sadness.  Maybe one day I will be able to wake up on the 28th of August and not feel the sorrow, but that day isn’t here yet.  So for today it is Happy Birthday thoughts and wishes for a man whose melody continues on in the great cosmos as stardust, magical beautiful stardust.

A New Day

Things have changed at my house; good things fortunately.  It’s been 17 months since Kevin died and since then I had elected to stay in the house and live by myself.  Whether that was the right thing to do, or perhaps it wasn’t the best thing to do, doesn’t really matter.  It was a choice I made and it brought me to this point.

At this point, things have now changed.  My house is full of energy and life again.  My daughter, her fiancé and their 18 month old have now moved in.  Actually, I suggested it.  The timing was right.  The real estate market here has gone silly, with prices that were way beyond what a house should sell for.  So, I thought, why not see if they could sell their house and capitalize on the market.  No harm really.  They could afford their house, it was a bit small, but a good house, but they could also see if there was interest in buying it.  If they could make a good profit on it, why not.  They could move in with me until the market corrects, and then the money they make will go a bit farther.  A good plan I thought, it just depended on whether the house sold or not.

It sold alright, in one day.   Craziness!  They had a viewing before it even hit the market.  Only three weeks to closing date, which, with a small child, is quite the push.  They managed though and now are residents of the family homestead.  There will be some growing pains as we get used to each other, but that’s to be expected.  There will be some adjustments for me, yikes, old girl that I am, I forgot what it is like to have a toddler around.  Baby goes to bed and we whisper, no matter what room we are speaking in, we whisper.  We could be in the garage and still speak in hushed voice, Lord knows we don’t want to wake the little man child up.

It’s not forever, it’s just for now.  I think a year ago I wasn’t ready.  I needed to face my loneliness as well as my needs.  To do some hard thinking, preferable to avoid, but necessary on a multitude of levels.  And writing, wow I have written out my thoughts throughout the months that have passed.  As I got the house ready to welcome the kids,  I found steno pads, index cards, notepads; any blank writing sheets, I filled them up.  I don’t recall writing half of them, but I did date and number them all.  There are whole weeks of time that I know better than to look at, I wasn’t in a good place.  Likely it will be years before I revisit those thoughts.

I am glad to have some activity back in the house.  Glad to hear voices other than my own and those on the darn television.  Happy to have people to just coexist with, especially ones I love.  So I will enjoy it for now.  Hopefully it will work out fine for the duration, but what will be will be.  When the time is right they will move into their own home again, which they need to do and are already planning.  I think though of how hard Kevin tried to get them to move in with me as he got sicker and sicker.  I wouldn’t hear of it, I didn’t want them to see me at my lowest, hell, I didn’t want to even be in my own skin then.  Kevin was so worried about me and was still trying to take care of me even after he was gone.  Funny how it turned out.  He would be pleased.

 

It’s the little things

It will be 17 months on the 29th of this month.  I’ve had to deal with a lot of the big things that changed after  Kevin died.  Looking after the house on my own, paying the bills, facing everyday without him.  Unavoidable, unrelenting reality.  You can’t not face it and still be considered sane.

Thus, over the course of time, most everyday things go back to a state of routine.  Newly created out of necessity, but still a state of routine.  Sometimes there is a flash of sadness, anger or resentment about it, especially when something isn’t going right, but overall, it becomes just the way it is.

Always, though, there are those things that come out of nowhere.  Unprepared, they are like a sucker punch, you just didn’t see it coming.  It’s okay when you are alone or out of public sight, but when it happens at work, or someplace public, it is just darn awkward.

This week a coworker returned to the workplace after having been off due to the death of an aged parent.  Sorrow is still sorrow and I know that, but the selfish side of me is bitter, and I feel ripped off.  I don’t begrudge the sorrow of my coworker,  I just hate the unfairness of it all, why does one person live to a ripe old age and not another?  The force of my emotion surprised me.  I am embarrassed that I can’t express my sympathy and ashamed that I feel the way I do.

It’s these types of things that make me realize that, although on the outside I may appeared healed and on the path to closure, actually I’m still far, far away from the even keel I so want.  I want my composure back, securely fitted, so that it doesn’t slip off revealing anything raw or weak or ugly.   When things are going along smoothly, without any ripples, I almost believe I am there.  Then, it just takes one little thing, and that little thing can come from just about any direction.