It goes without saying that I miss Mike. He was my life companion. My best friend. My lover. My Soul's mate. He was my person. The one who championed me. He was the man who loved me to the depths of my Soul - from the depth of his own.
But, now he is dead. And, I am here missing all that he was.
To say that I miss his love is an understatement. When he was alive, Mike introduced me a love that was big, bold, and beautiful. I long to have our love back. And, a piece of me will always desire his love because it is impossible to have been shown a love of this power and immensity and not want more of it - to want it to last forever. Suffice to say, Mike made me a life long fan of love. And, today, like every day, I continue to crave his physical presence in my life.
Simply 'sensing' his presence is not the same for me. Continuing to love someone in separation -across dimensions- is possible, but it is different from loving each other in the physical world.
I don't know much, but I know that Mike still loves me from afar, from wherever he is. But, now, his love is no longer tangible to me. I know that his love has grown deeper since he died; but, now, his love is not something I can experience with all my senses. I struggle because I want his love to still be enough to sustain me - for the rest of my life - but it is not enough. I wish it was. But, it just isn't. As a human being I need more; and, it is crushing to admit this to myself.
I was 43 years old when Mike took his last breath. I was young. I am still young. And, age aside, I can not imagine living the rest of my life alone. And, this isn't because I am afraid of being alone. I'm divorced - I've chosen to be alone before. And, again, as a widow, I will chose to remain alone unless true love comes for me. But, for reasons I can't explain, I know that love will find me again one day - in some capacity.
Since Mike died, I've accepted that I need a palpable love. I know and respect that some widowed people are content to remain alone. They are satisfied with their choice and I am envious of them in some ways. I often question why I am not completely happy without being in love. I don't know the answer to this. But, after 602 days, I accept that I need a type of love that the man I love can not give me anymore. I need a love I can taste with my lips. A love I can see with my eyes. A love I can hear with my ears. A love I can touch with my hands. I want to be drunk on a love like this - again- before my life is over.
Mike wants me to be happy.
Mike wants me to live.
Mike wants me to love and be loved again.
I want these things too.
But, this is not easy stuff.
Or, is it?
Outliving your spouse is many things, and simple isn't one of them. It is complicated. All sorts of complicated.
But, at the same time, it is actually very straightforward too.
I feel like I feel too much and think too much when really I shouldn’t overthink the concept at all. Just flow with life and the new beginnings it may bring. Enjoy it for all that it is and could be. Instead though, I feel guilty and scared. Scared that if I allow myself to love again, that love will be taken away. Guilty that I have thoughts of wanting to be with another. Craving intimate moments, soulful conversations, touch, cuddles, sharing stories and laughter, looking into another’s eyes, hearing the words “I love you” and feeling loved. I miss all of these things so much. To me these have always been what makes life worth living, being able to share in life and love with another. I feel guilty for wanting to feel love again.Read more
I can hear the fire works from last years New Years Eve celebrations. They go off with a bang. Thoughts racing of families watching them with smiles and couples sharing kisses that would seal there love for the year ahead. Last NYE I sat alone on my bedroom floor, with photos sprawled in front of me. A pen in hand, writing letters to John that he will never get to read. I heard the fire works go off and said out loud "happy new years kiss, I love you".
This new year I had been looking forward to, but as it draws closer I feel sick to celebrate a new year without him. I never thought much of the term "With a heavy heart" until I knew grief. I know you will all understand when I say, my heart feels heavy at the thought of this new year. A year past without him, the new year brings new beginnings, but it doesn't bring him back.Read more
Just before Christmas, in 2002, Megan and I met. A few weeks later, and I was already invited to her family’s home for Christmas dinner and gifts. I was accepted into their clan with open arms, and I’ve been a part of their family ever since. I’ve been at Christmas dinner in 2005, not long after Megan’s brother died. I was there in 2010, a week before Megan got her lung transplant, where we weren’t sure if she would be there for 2011. I was there in 2014, a month after Megan died, followed a few weeks later by both her grandmother and great-grandmother.
I was there last year, where it seemed there were more people missing from the family than were present. By Christmas this year, Megan’s grandfather has also passed.
One would think that this holiday would become more and more somber each year. The family is seemingly shrinking, if one looks only at those that are no longer here.Read more
I’ve had a couple of really beautiful, full-circle moments recently. The sort that have reminded me in such sweet ways how totally interconnected my old life and my life now still and always are.
This past week, we finally got my couch moved into Mike’s house from the garage. And by my couch, I really mean Drew’s. I have been dragging this thing around ever since he died… an enormous olive green couch. It is really the only piece of furniture of his I have. Since we didn’t live together, much of his bigger stuff ended up being given away or taken to Goodwill when he died, as there was no place to put it. But this couch, I was not letting go of it. It sat in a storage unit for 3 years after he died, before finally making the journey north with me from Texas to Ohio last fall.
So we finally get this thing moved into Mike’s basement, where we have made a cozy den next to my art studio area. Over the course of a few days, I watched as something really heartwarming took place.
Hey readers! I’m filling in for Mike today, as he had something come up and was unable to write. He’ll be back with us next Tuesday, so until then, I’m here to wander through some of my own thoughts of late and see what bubbles up...
Mike and I have spent the past few months moving all my things to his place, as many of you know. After a decade of living alone, finally, I’ve taken the plunge into this next level of partnership. A level in fact that I never even made it to with Drew, my late-fiance, because he died before we were able to get there.
We would have moved in together that same year he died, and married the next. But neither of those things happened. Instead, I gained new fears which have come with me into my relationship with Mike. Although there is no serious talk of it yet, we do have plans and hopes to get married one day. As this commitment begins to enter my mind more, new fears arise. Fears about being on the cusp of a new beginning and having it all taken away. Fears of moving in together and marrying because “what if he dies before we ever get there. Or the day after. Or three months into marriage...” What if, what if, what if. As I face these phases of my life for the first time since Drew and I were in a similar place, I find the fears quite loud.Read more
Yesterday was one of the most beautiful and hope-filled days I have been a part of since I began this entire widowed journey. We were in the woods, standing tall in the trees, three widowed people and a little girl who lost her mother. The setting itself was magic, and made even more-so when we heard of the significance of that place. For our friend, who lost her husband 5 years ago, was marrying her husband’s best friend in the place they used to go walking after he died… in those early raw months, they stood side by side, taking one step at a time down a path that he no longer could. Together, side by side, they began a walk into the future, not even knowing that it would lead to a different kind of side-by-side one day.
It was personally significant to me in a few ways that no one else knew until I mentioned it… but this is the first wedding I have been to in 4 years. I’ve been invited to many weddings, and refused to go to any of them until I felt able. And this one, finally, I felt not only able but excited for. Excited. What? How is that even possible? In fact, I didn’t have an ounce of fear in me about the triggers it would bring up. To my total surprise, I found myself completely lost in the moment.Read more