.... set backs.
I know that's a given.
Life is full of set backs.
Everyone's life, not just mine.
So why is it then, that when I am hit with one of them .... I'm surprised?
Last week was a set back.
One huge, hairy set back.
It started the moment I arrived home from a trip and continued on through Sunday (and is even bleeding a little bit into this week).
I'm sure that jet lag and exhaustion had something to do with it .... and with the way I encountered things.
One such event was meeting a complete stranger. As we spoke we realized that our husbands may have known each other. She asked what my husband did now and I told her that he died almost 3 years ago.
Stranger: "Of what?"
Me: "An aortic dissection."
Stranger: ...... a slight pause and then ..... "Well, at least he didn't have something that made him linger on and on. I would hate to die like that. When my parents ....."
She kept speaking but I quit listening.
I was stunned (and how ironic since I had just re-posted "The Things I Didn't Need to Hear").
I wasn't stunned as much by the fact that she said it. I'm used to idiotic sentences.
I was stunned that such a statement still had the ability to take my breath away.
I had to bite my tongue to keep from yelling at her, "FORTY SEVEN!!! He was ONLY 47, so NO, I'm not THRILLED that he didn't linger!"
She continued to talk while I stared off into space, trying not to let the tears fall from behind my sunglasses.
There will always be people who say stupid things about Jim being dead .... and there may always be times when they hit me in the gut.
A couple of days later I was shopping at Target (not a promo here, but that store IS my retail "crack").
I ran into a friend that Jim and I had known for years and years. We met their family at our church back in Oklahoma and they were a part of our close-knit group.
This family had moved to Texas years ago, into our community, but had since moved out. It was just sheer coincidence that we happened to be at the same Target.
She caught me up with her family and I caught her up with mine.
As she talked, I started to think .... "Wait until Jim hears ....." before I remembered. It was only a second, a nano second, really, but it still happened.
I thought of him first.
As I drove away from the store I started to cry. Jim was the only connection I had to this friend in my life here. He was the only other person who knew her and knew our histories together.
And he's dead.
I had no one with whom to share the news of seeing her.
No one who would be interested in what her husband is now doing.
I cried all the way home as I thought about how much I've missed sharing with him.
I cry now as I type this, thinking of how much I miss him.
There will always be moments that will come .... and I'll wish that he were here to share them with me.
There will always be tears when I stop to think how very much I miss him.
There will always be crappy moments, or days or even weeks.
Yes, they get fewer and farther between.
And the tears start getting less gut-wrenching.
But I'm sure that there will always be tears.
Just as there will always be love.
The love he gave me can never be forgotten or lost.
Not while my children or I am alive.
There will always be an impact he made on someone or something.
There will always be joy .... that I had him for as long as I did.
I guess that's one thing we can count on in life.
There will always be ....