I won't lie, I've cried quite a lot the past few days. It may just be that time of the month making me extra emotional… but it’s also a lot more. It will be my anniversary in a few days… eight years ago next week is when I went on my first date with Drew. The following week, just seven days later, will be the 5th anniversary of his death.
It’s hard to imagine he has been gone 5 years, but surprisingly, this fact isn’t the one getting to me. Perhaps because I spent the first few months of this year already processing the “5 year mark” being here, I almost feel as if that has already passed. The one that is getting me though, is the other milestone.
We would have been together for 8 years now. Instead, we only got three. THREE. And I know, no time is ever enough. Not three, or ten, or fifty. But I do feel like there is a specific kind of heartbreak for young couples that had so very much unfinished life to live. We hadn’t even moved in together yet, much less gotten married or started a family. And so much of that was slated to unfold in that very year when he died. So much was already in the plans to be happening. It will haunt me forever, the unfinished stuff, I know that. And I know it’s normal for it to be worse as I get closer to this day. It just sucks I guess, there’s not much else to say there.Read more
Tonight is opening night of the theater show at Adelphi University that I have been directing and writing for the past month. I am unbelievably proud of this show, it is hilarious and even poignant in parts, and of course I am missing my husband like mad right now. I want him here for this. I want him to be standing there after the first show ends, and the second one, and the third and the fourth -with that proud and happy look on his face - that look that said: That's my wife, and she created this. I want to feel his arms wrap around me as I go out into the lobby area where people's friends and family wait to greet them after the show is done, and take the flowers in my hand that he got for me, and talk about the show all night long with him like we used to. I want to have my somebody, my person, waiting for me in that lobby like everybody else. I want all of that and more. Yes.Read more
I've been feeling the strains of beginning anew lately. Let's face it - starting to date someone is always messy. New person, new energy, new triggers and sensitivities. But being widowed makes it even trickier. After almost 3 years without a man by my side... I am a completely different person than who I was with Drew. I am far more independent. I don't even think of it as being alone these 3 years, but that I have been in a very deeply committed relationship to myself. I'm discovering this is making it hard for me to navigate the landscape of a relationship with someone ne
Today is 2 years since my beloved husband Chuck died.
I've always used the word died since he...died. Don't care at all for the other, gentler words. Not at all. I need the harsh words to remind me that he is indeed dead because there is a part of me, somewhere inside of me, a part I can't identify, that just doesn't believe that he's dead or that this isn't some huge cosmic joke being perpetrated upon me and someday he'll come walking in the door and we'll both be totally disbelieving and we'll hug and hug and hug some more and then we'll have wild and crazy sex and then, well, get back to our lives.
Yesterday I was faced with another one of those big hurdles for us widowed folk – a wedding. My dear friend married the man of her dreams and began her life as a Mrs.
This wasn’t my ‘first’ wedding as a widow, my best friend got married three week’s after Dan’s death. While I attended that event, wore my bridesmaid dress and managed to stick around until after the formalities before excusing myself and going home to cry, I was still in deep shock at that point and the whole experience seems surreal to me now.
So I guess you could say that yesterday’s wedding was the first that I was really present for.Read more
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.
Saturday, I carried the remnants of my husband's body from our bedroom to the summit of Monks Road, in Glossop, the spot he had chosen as his final resting place. It was one of the hardest things I have had to do, in this 10 month journey since his death.
His family and I scheduled this date months ago. Even then, I was reluctant to consider it. It was a comfort to me, to have his scatter tube here, in our room, underneath the photo of us, taken at our wedding. I loved the little shrine I had made for him. I would touch and pat the tube as I talked to him. I would say hello to him in the morning and tell him good night when I came upstairs for bed.Read more
Today was my fiance's birthday. The third year without him here. You always think it's going to get easier. And you never really have any clue how it's going to hit you. That's no mystery to me. I've been dealing with the milestone of my mom's birthday for over 20 years now since she died... and some years are just harder than others, for no real reason at all. I gave up long ago trying to understand the "why" of all this.
I feel like this 3rd birthday has been even harder than the 2nd without him. Maybe this is because it is the same amount of birthdays I shared WITH him... we only had 3 short years together. As I'm writing this, I'm thinking it has a lot to do with it. This officially kicks off the first of many milestones this year that are going to be even harder than last year, for that one reason. By June, I will officially be entering into having lived more time after his death than I actually had with him. It's heartbreaking, even now just thinking of it. And it's weighed so heavily on my heart today that I've scarcely even had words.
For two years and nine months now... I have had one of those weird widow "things" that I have done. Or really that I haven't done. For all of these days, weeks, months, and years... I have not cleaned the bathroom mirror. Not once. The reason for this is simple, and anyone widowed will likely understand. When I shower every morning, I get out and look up at the fogged glass of that mirror... and across it are the faint streaks of a hand that once wiped it clean. A hand much bigger than mine.
For two years and nine months, I have been comforted by this... every time the mirror fogs up, there he appears again. For that moment, I can still believe that my fiancé is somehow right around the corner. I can believe that he is nearby even though I can't see him - just like his handprint on the mirror has been there all along, even when I can't see it. It has been a daily reminder to believe his love and his spirit still exist despite his body not being here anymore.
This coming Monday would have been my husband's 36th birthday. Instead, it will be the second that I had to mark without him. All week I've felt the weight of my grief with such intensity. The disbelief that he's gone. The whys, the if onlys and the its not fairs.Read more