Today is a sad day. Other than the REALLY obvious, no particular reason, it just Is. #4 woke up that way, and I became sad, dealing with him. “Dealing with” sounds like a chore. It’s not. I simply have no experience with a 16 year old who just lost his father. I ache for him when he’s like this, and wish there were some way to take some of that off of him, but really, there isn’t. No more than there is a way someone else could carry my burden. It is what it is….that’s my motto now.
I don’t really look beyond the day-to-day, except for really long term stuff, which feels more like a fun fantasy/dream thing that distracts me from the hard stuff. We all need that, right? Something to visualize, to bring down the blood pressure and calm the nerves. “Think of the beach” is a common one. That’s what Dr. Courage says when my blood pressure is high. I love the beach. When you’re there, everything Reality is too far away to worry about. I want to take #4 there, as soon as it warms up.
For several days, that knot of sorrow has been tamed into just a small bead, like a wart or something, instead of a boulder in my gut. Today it’s a pretty big thing, and anxiety is sitting on my shoulder, whispering stuff like “weakling…what makes you think you can handle this? You know he handled it all and you’re pathetic….” I hate that voice. Himself did, too. He would give me something complicated to do when that happened, like dealing with the house renovations last year. That was pretty big and I did every last bit of it…well ok, so I hired the contractor and he handled it, but I made the decisions. See, I am NOT pathetic. Get thee behind me , Satan. You’re an asshole.
There’s stuff needs doing now. The septic tank, while fine for the 2 of us, in inadequate for more than 2 and if I decide to rent the house when we move, will need to be bigger. So, that and a new drain field. If I can get a new roof, house painted, new floors, all that….surely I can deal with a septic tank system. But, see, I DON’T WANT TO. I want to make the pretty decisions like what color the shutters should be and if the buddleia should be pink or purple. Himself handled the nitty gritty stuff.
I chose lavender.
You know, Himself thought I was…I don’t know…kind of unfeeling. I am not a romantic type, constantly forgetting birthdays and anniversaries (even my own), and he felt like I married him for his mad skills and not because I really LOVED him. But, I did and still do! I am not pining away in the Jane Austen sort of way, with hand on forehead and refusing to wash his old t-shirt. But I DO sleep in it, it is soft, and comforting and reminds me of a really good time we had last year- when he got to drive an army tank and run over a car.
But today, I guess maybe I am pining a bit. But then he has only been gone 7 weeks. That’s not very long. A 7 week old baby is still sort of a newborn. A 7 week old death is still startling and peculiar. Occasionally there will be blips of anger (WHY DID YOU DO THIS TO ME?!) and (DID YOU REALLY NEED ALL THIS STUFF?!) but those are soon forgotten in the wave of sorrow that washes all that anger clean, and turns it into fondness for his human nature. I really miss that…the stuff of married irritations and human shortcomings. That’s the stuff relationships are made of, the forgiveness and the overlooking of things. I think that’s the stuff I miss the most.
So, today I will feel sad and miss him. Tomorrow will take care of itself until it gets here. In the mean time, plants will get watered and dinner will get planned and laundry folded, because Life moves on, as surely as a river. #4 will grow and learn and come to terms with his loss in his own way. I will be here to help, but he will find his own path toward healing and be able to remember Himself with love, without the boulder in his gut.