Over the weekend I attended John’s son’s swimming lesson. He jumped off the diving board for the first time. Every first brings with it pride for my children along with the inevitable thought, John is missing out or we are missing out on experiencing this first with him. Whichever way you look at it, it’s unfair that he is not here.
I left the swimming lesson in a fog of sadness that I couldn’t share this first with John. Lost in my thoughts I began to reverse the car without paying complete attention. I had to brake suddenly when I realised I was going to reverse into a car that was about to drive past behind me. I stopped about half way out of my car park, leaving quite some distance still between myself and the other vehicle. However the lady in the other car was cross at my vague driving skills, she threw her hands up over the steering wheel and proceeded to yell profanities out the window.
The other day, a dear widower friend called me, and could immediately sense in my tone, that something was off. "What's wrong?", he said. "Nothing," I answered, not because I was trying to be vague, but more because I couldn't really identify a specific thing that was wrong. So he said: "Come on. I know you better than that. Something's wrong. What happened?" And then I launched into it. "It's nothing. Honestly. It's nothing, and it's everything. I said nothing because Im starting to bore myself with my own story after awhile. I'm like a broken record. You know what's wrong. It's the same damn thing that's always wrong. He's still dead."
My marriage to Mike wasn’t perfect. I mean come on…there is usually at least some issue that arises even in the happiest of partnerships. And we had plenty. Most of our concerns stemmed from his unhealthy eating habits and the results of that but we had other little annoying problems and arguments too. On the whole, though, we were happy. We both felt deeply that we were meant for each other, that we were each other’s true soul mates, and so we worked through all the other issues as best we could. There was never a question that we wouldn’t stay together. I really meant my vows…til death do us part…I just never imagined it would really come to that. At least so soon.