The Forgotten

Seconds filled with thoughts turn to minutes and the minutes to hours. It’s only been 3 months so there isn’t going to be a whole day that I won’t be affected by losing you. In all honesty, I will never go a day without missing you. So why does it feel like everyone else has forgotten you?

When you left, I was surrounded by family and friends. They were watching my every move and analyzing my every word. I was instantly under a microscope being dissected in hopes they would find a cure. There is no cure for life without you. There is only numbing and bandages until the break in my heart heals enough to beat stronger again but the scar will always remain.

“Do you feel you are getting over it?”

It? It? What is IT? Losing my person? Being left suddenly alone? Being made responsible for all of the bills? Having to empty closets? Having to watch objects in my life be taken and sent away to others because instead of signing a marriage license we had to rush a Will? What exactly is the “it” you are referring to?

“Do you feel you are getting over losing Clayton?”

Ahhhh, so Clayton was the “it”.  Clayton – a human being. Clayton – your friend. Clayton - my other half. Clayton – my dog’s other dad. Clayton – my nephews’ “Uncle Tin”. Clayton – my love. It’s been 3 months and you now refer to him as “it”.

Most of those people that gallantly came to check on me at my lowest have gone silent. I feel forgotten. I feel like Clayton has been forgotten.

This must be what they mean when they say “out of sight, out of mind”. I’m still here and I still think of Clayton every day but we have been forgotten….


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  • Sarah Treanor
    commented 2018-08-05 06:20:25 -0700
    It’s horrible when people start to do this, but sadly so much of our society is completely inept these days to know how to properly support and deal with loss. One of my very best friends did the same sort of thing to me in the months after my fiance died… I almost walked away from the friendship entirely. Five years later, I was there on the other end of the phone, while her dad was dying from a very aggressive cancer, which took him within only months. She didn’t understand how to be there for me, but now she does. Now we have had many conversations about my loss, and what I went through, and how sorry she is that she didn’t really understand what to do. Some people truly just do not get it and they end up saying stupid things.

    My only hope on this journey is that now, as I am healing more, I can show up for others – even the ones who did not know how to show up for me – and at least show them "THIS is what you do. And THIS is what you say. " So that they can learn from it and learn to be there for others down the road. Sadly, it usually takes going through their own horror story for them to get it.

    Its horrible, the way so many run off after a few months. My new partner, also widowed, he had the same experience as you… and I do think sometimes it is harder for men. There is a double standard for men to just suck it up and deal silently. Total crap. Nearly everyone abandoned him after his wife of ten years died. Worst of all, it has made him untrusting of people now, and much less willing to build close friendships… because people he thought would be there, left him alone in his time of need. I don’t blame him. Sometimes people can be so unbelievably unaware of how their actions, and words, affect others. The “IT” thing – yep – so horrible!

    Despite how shitty it is to go through, this was really well written, and it portrays how truly awful those words do feel, so completely.
  • Linda Poehler
    commented 2018-08-04 23:48:15 -0700
    I am here right now in the same place as you. My “it” is gone and forgotten. But not by me. Not for a second. Life has gone on all around me. But I lay here every single minute of my “life” if you want to call it that now. I don’t sleep. I don’t live. I exist. And I reached out tonight to all of those who would “be there” for me and no response…silence. I’m not suicidal, but I now understand how those who are feel so alone. Because We are led to believe there is a safety net…in theory maybe, but not in reality. I’m pledging tonight to be that safety net for someone, somehow.
  • Cathy
    commented 2018-08-04 06:46:45 -0700
    So sorry, Bryan, unfortunately I do get “it”. Even years later, people ask me “how are you doing” when I’d think they would know the answer. My life has been forever changed when he died, can’t they see that? Until they experience the same, they have no clue. I bring my husband into many conversations so they all DO remember him, I often think they don’t want to bring his name up thinking that will upset me. Quite the opposite, I want to hear their memories about him, I want to hear his name. Be patient with your family and friends, try to educate them about your loss, some of them will stick with you, some of them it’s ok to let go. And remember all of us here before you who get it.