Wednesday will be a year since Himself died, left this mortal place for another life, went home, whatever you want to call it. He’s been gone for a whole year. 364 days as of today. Or something. Don’t ask me to do math. I’m not up to it.
What a strange year it has been. It has been both the longest year of my life, and the fastest one. So much has happened to us all. There has been so much growing up forced on us, so much reluctant change. I won’t exactly say I’ve been dragged kicking and screaming into this new life, but there has certainly been a lot of whining and complaining.
Isn’t that natural, though? Wouldn’t you? Here we were, clicking along in our lives, lah-dee-dah, just doing our thing, when WHAM there is this massive unexpected change, one that is entirely not even remotely AT ALL on the radar. Just ripped right off the planet and here we are left to clean up the mess and figure out what to do now.
But figure it out we did. The past year has been spent shifting assorted paradigms into something recognizable. Plans were changed (oh BOY were they changed!), Unexpected things were done…I had to teach someone to drive. THAT wasn’t EVER on my job description! I had to do things with lawyers and judges and many many agents and gummint stuff, all things that were NOT in MY job description! My job was all about Home Fires and Meals and Nutrition, gardens and laundry and floors and stuff.
But NO, said God, “I’ve got OTHER PLANS for you.” Boy does He ever. He has other plans for all of us, that don’t involve Himself’s corporeal self, but just the memory and lessons learned from him. No, I get to be a grandma without the grandpops. That will be a question that will have to be answered one day. I’m the one taking the son out to look for a job interview suit, or answering questions about which I have no answers.
And you know, it’s ok. We are making it. Struggling, to be sure, but limping into a degree of normalcy that, while it’s resented deeply sometimes, is recognized as probably good for us. We have all been forced to grow up, in an unexpected direction.
And I do resent it. Sometimes I am very angry at Himself, for having the temerity to leave us so suddenly and permanently. I see my boys hurting and don’t know how to help. Sometimes I get angry at God for messing with my plans so hard. I mean really, really messing with them. I WILL NEVER GET THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY. Likely I won’t ever get a 25th either. That makes me really mad. Sure, we were married 28-1/2 years, but the 25th was
ruined cancelled by Yet Another Work Crisis. I know that is trivial, but sometimes you have to cuddle close to the trivial stuff to keep from crying over the big things.
But even in all that, some really good, and interesting, things have happened (time for a bullet list, I love a good bullet list)
- Himself is relieved of the frustrations and sorrows of this world. There were times he was so tired of people and the way they acted. Now he isn’t!
- I’ve learned so much, about dealing with things, and about myself. Apparently, if you act like you know what you’re doing, people think you do, and deal with you accordingly. Also, I know more about stuff than I thought I did. That’s empowering. Also, with enough paperwork, you CAN get through to the Gummint. Also, if you don’t know what you’re doing, there’s no harm in saying so. There’s always someone willing to impart their superior knowledge (like a lawyer, who is apparently trained to not roll his eyes when I ask the same question on 4 different occasions)
- My sons have been forced to stand on their own, and they’re doing it!
- I’ve finally started school and it’s..educational. As it should be.
- I’ve learned how to fix a washing machine
- and a dishwasher
I’ve also learned the value of family, and relationships. To be honest, Himself and I were kind of a cocoon sort of thing, relying on each other and pretty much no one else. Since he died, I have learned how to reach out and rely on other people, do social things, have FUN. *and* not feel guilty about it.
I still am grieving. We all are. I still feel a little weird, like in underwear that doesn’t quite fit right, about wearing this label of Widow. I’m TOO YOUNG. I still kind of expect him to drive up in the evening, or to smell bourbon and cigars in the air after dark. I do feel a terrible loneliness sometimes, a big empty place with sharp edges that then fills with a thickness I can’t breathe through. Those are the times I have to roll up in a ball and allow the sorrow to happen. It must happen.
But the sorrow is OK, it’s allowed. God felt sorrow, He knows what it’s like. He also knows what He’s doing by putting me on this path. I don’t like the path. I resent it sometimes (a lot, but there it is. I’m trying to be honest here), but i am going down it with as much grace as possible. Sometimes more than others, but still going down it. I might as well, since that is that path I’m on. It beats sitting in the mud and throwing rocks.