I reached another widow milestone this week: on Thursday Dan had been dead for 617 days. The same number of days that I was blessed to have him in my life. One year, eight months, two weeks and four days. That's all the time we had together.
I'd been dreading this moment for months. For some reason, I even have a countdown app on my phone, so I could watch the days ticking down. You know, just because I seem to enjoy torturing myself! As the days ticked over; 612; 613; 614; the anxiety and dread intensified.
I couldn't bear the thought of being his widow longer than I had known him. I didn't want to be that far away from our last kiss. We were only married for 45 days before he died, so the milestone of 'being his widow longer than I was his wife' passed very quickly, when I was still in deep shock. So I had held this 617 day mark as a point in time, down the track, when surely life would be easier and the pain wouldn't be so bad. I guess that probably is the case, but it's harder to see when you're in the midst of it.
As is common with these milestones, the actual day itself wasn't as bad as the lead up had been. I cried myself to sleep the night before, but woke up on Thursday feeling... well, normal. To my surprise, it was just another day. He was still dead. It still royally sucked. But his love was still all around me.
I got up, went to work, and managed not to do that weird thing where you blurt out to people that your husband is dead or that it's a difficult milestone day (especially one that someone not familiar with grief would never understand!).
But, I missed him. Oh, how I missed him. Lately, I find myself thinking of him every moment of every day. How much he would have laughed at something on tv; how he'd have enjoy a meal I'd cooked; the way he'd carry on, circling pictures of the Easter eggs he wanted in the shopping catalogues that he loved pouring through. Every time he pops in to my mind I whisper quietly 'I miss you' and clench my hand, as if I was wrapping it around his. Yep, I miss him a lot at the moment.
And now I'm in the middle of the Easter long weekend with my family, who are awesome, and all I can think about is how much I wish he were here. One moment I'm laughing at memories of him (like the year we spoilt each other with chocolate eggs and then, in a moment of weakness, decided we should give them all away and be committed to getting healthy for our pending wedding... before turning up at my sister's house the following day and admitting we'd made a mistake and wanted them all back!). And the next moment I'm wiping away tears because such a big part of me is missing.
He made every day fun and special. His laugh was infectious and his hugs were second to none. I miss my husband. I will continue to miss him, regardless of how much time passes and how long I'm his widow. Because those 617 days we spent together changed my life and made my heart sing and I will always wish that we'd had the lifetime together that we'd planned. Death sucks.