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.
So, 2 years ago. The grief is still very present but I imagine to most of the world I seem okay and ordinary on the outside. On the inside the grief has lodged itself into the marrow of my bones and become my heartbeat and the rush of my blood but nobody can see that so yes, I look incredibly normal whatever that means to the outside world.
I took my normal appearing self to Sedona today to remember and honor him. Our oldest son went with me, along with his almost 2 year old daughter, who was born 2 months after Chuck's death. Our destination was the Stupa at the Buddhist Peace Park. Chuck practiced Buddhist philosophy and that was part of what sustained him through an ugly cancer. Alexander, my son, scattered some of his dad's cremains around the base of the Stupa and we walked around it 3 times, as is the custom, each of us quietly praying a mantra.
Before going to the Stupa, we went to Bell Rock, the site of our last family hike and where we went last year to remember Chuck. Bell Rock holds a strong place in all of our hearts and my grand-daughter danced with me on the first level. She's also an FWG, though, of course, she has a long way to go before attaining the true rank and file. At her age, she's a future warrior goddess, and proved it when she good-naturedly hiked the trail with us and did some climbing with our assistance.
I don't know that my heart will ever not be broken and I'm not concerned one way or another. What I know is that there aren't many who are gifted with the love of a man the way I was, in my life. How miraculous that on this huge earth he and I found each other and fell in love and stayed in love. And how impossibly devastating it is to know that he is gone from my life.
And how beautiful it is that today, our son, and the grand-daughter Chuck never met, went with me to remember him and remember the love, and that this little girl danced with her Granna to celebrate this man who left such a legacy of love behind him.