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….’

Imagine

Imagine that in life there was this amazing repository where we could store the best days of our lives.  A sort of bank of those outstanding days where the world is right.  It was only open one day a year for you to deposit your days, and you could only access what you’d stored on that same day.  What would you put in there?

I think about things like this all the time.  How incredible it would be to have a few of those days back, safely stored in all their dimensions.  To relive as they occurred:  in my youth and in my middle age and in my future when I am aged.  A fantastic escape to what was, a reinforcement of all my life and experience.

Memory provides the shadows, this would give all the colours.  Imagine that all those days are stored in space and time. Imagine.  Love is never lost and youth is never gone. Joy surrounds us and serenity is within our grasp. Imagine.

Our imagination and our memories are gifts, for most of us anyway. Sometimes it’s good to relax and let go and just let your mind wander. That’s what I’m doing tonight – remembering and imagining.

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.

 

All tangled together

Sorrow is a funny thing.  It seems like it is always lurking out there, that it is always present inside my mind.

Today at work I spoke with a co-worker who had lost a sibling around the same time as my husband, Kevin, died.  I asked after her sibling, how things were going.  My co-worker replied that things were still quite rough and progress seemed to be rather slow.  ‘This I understand,’ I told her, ‘you see, your life has been entwined with another’s completely.  To have someone torn out of the fabric of your day-to-day life, leaves big gaping holes along with lots of dark holes that can swallow you up for days on end.’  It’s not about healing, it isn’t.  It is more about acceptance.

My past is all tangled up with Kevin’s, who he was, what he thought.  He will always be with me because of that.  When people ask me things that may cause me to think back, then there will always be that blend, of him and me, what happened to us, but that only I am here to recall.  It can’t be otherwise.  It can’t help but be painful to cast my mind back.  I loved him and he’s gone, that’s not easy.   Same for my children, when they remember growing up it has to be tough.

Memories can’t be caught in your hands or held in your arms, they can’t be weighed or measured.  They can be comforting and crippling at the same time.  Sometimes they come rushing to the surface without warning, and sometimes they get all tangled up in my mind, because I want what I can’t have but I remember so well.  Damn hard.