2 months ago today was Himself’s memorial service. That entire week was set apart from time. It is an entirely different…something. It was a transition period for us, going from being wife and sons to…Not A Wife Anymore and Her Guardians. All the roles have changed, almost completely. I look at our sons differently, they have had to grow up in a week, completely change their outlooks. The person they fought with, relied on, looked to for advice, boom. Gone.
Same here. The person who’s hand I held just about everywhere, who I relied on, talked to, who was my companion…boom. Gone. It continues to be very disconcerting, I still wonder when he’s going to get home, and feel terribly lonely in the morning and evening.
It has changed, though. The grief has gone from a thunderous storm, with tornadoes sucking everything up, to a Winter’s rain, days long and soft, feeling endless.
Every day, something else occurs to me…one more thing that won’t ever happen, another sort of touch, or comment, or conversation. Discussions that won’t happen…
We never did take that other leg of Route 66, the one from Amarillo to San Diego. We were going to do that after #4 started college. Maybe one of the boys will go with me, but that won’t be quite the same. We didn’t get to New York to see the store windows at Christmas, either. That was in the works for this Winter. We were supposed to take the cancelled 25th anniversary trip for our 30th. He was supposed to build new bedroom furniture and make a playhouse for grandkids.
You know what I miss now? To the point of not wanting to see it anywhere (and that kind of limits tv and movies…)? Being touched. Not the friendly pat on the back type, but the kind developed over 30 years of familiarity and love. I miss sinking into a hug, or running my fingers through his hair, or having him come up behind me and kiss my neck. The thought that this sort of affectionate touch could never happen again is an incredibly lonely feeling.
Oh don’t panic. I am not about to go on a man hunt or anything. Ick. That would be weird right now, and probably unhealthy enough for Dr. H. to drop me in a comfortable private hospital. It’s not the affection I am missing, it’s HIMSELF’S affection, touch, whatever.
Today I saw a big group of couples on motorcycles. They all looked our age, professionals set enough in their careers to afford the $30,000 Ultra Glides Himself coveted. I saw old people holding hands, sitting next to each other in church. There was a couple, maybe a little older than us, chatting in the front seat of a vintage Pontiac GT convertible. Everywhere, couples, content in their relationships, enjoying each other…and I wanted it. I was angry about not having it. I wanted to tell all of them do not take it for granted, because you never know. I took it for granted. I knew we would get old together, have grandkids and Christmases and trips and arthritis and he would lose all his teeth and keep the spares in a glass on the bathroom counter.
There is a grandbaby coming soon, and in a couple of years I will be living close enough to Grandbaby to spend a lot of time with him (and any subsequent siblings). Hopefully time will be filled with such happy goings on that the pain of missing himself will ease, maybe the sharp edges of grief will smooth into pebbles.