For a while, I was laughing and smiling and moving along pretty well. And then I realized the crutch I was using was not something that was mine to use. So I put it down. And when I did, I looked around me and saw, so deeply, that John was not there. My insides crumbled again. But when you are a mom and you support your kids all alone, you don't get to stop. So I kept moving.
There are small things that help with that. But damn, this hand is f*cking hard to play. Today, I stayed home and did 5 (yes five) loads of laundry, made pancakes for breakfast, another batch of pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, cut up fresh fruit and cheese to have with carrots hummus and cheese for lunch, watch Star Wars 4 (again) with the kids, and literally just crawled through an empty shitty lonely day. I think of all of you out there that have someone beside you. Even if they are annoying and frustrating and don't get it a lot of the time, you are still not alone. And those of you who would tell me that I have kids, you just don't understand. If you stop and think a moment, you would know that is not what I mean.
The washing machine seems to have a leak of some sort. As does the faucet in the kitchen sink. And no matter how much I bust my ass, nothing is ever clean.
In my support group, there is this sweet woman who brings her husband's shirt. It is just one of his t-shirts. Nothing too special. But she sprays it with his cologne. And so it smells like him. And she said her daughters (who are older- I forget how old, teens?) come in to her room sometimes to get a sniff. She said she heard the one who is married talking about what she is going to do when she loses her husband because he doesn't wear cologne. She wondered if she would end up rubbing his deodorant all over a shirt. And that is just what I was thinking while she was talking, because John didn't wear cologne! So tonight, when I got in my jammies (a new red, silky nighty I bought myself) I put his deodorant on. Because of course I haven't gotten rid of it. At first it didn't really smell like him, but now that I am sweating a little, it sort of does. It is bitter sweet.
And our homework was to write a letter to him, to our husbands. Just the statement made me cry. And I wrote it last night. I haven't sobbed that hard since the week after he died. It's not even that I don't know what to do without him. It's more that I don't WANT to know what to do without him. I want HIM BACK. We were not a perfect couple. We had work to do. But he loved me so much! And I have never felt love like that- no matter what happened, I trusted him, believed in him, I knew he would be there for me. And now all I have is an echo of him in everything I do. I suppose I'm honored to have that, but it's just not enough.
The other thing, since I put that crutch down, is that the anger is visible below the surface again. Close enough that it rears it's head a couple times a day. It isn't as nasty. But it is still as strong.
I remember how I felt on our wedding day, in small ways. I look at our pictures, and I remember feeling so full of joy, I was buzzing...every part of my body felt like it was alive and full of everything powerful. I was excited and I knew that nothing was going to work out perfectly and it would all still be beautiful because I was walking the path to meet HIM. He was so different from anyone I had ever known, from anyone I ever dreamed would love me. I didn't have to be tough or cool to impress him. I just had to be me.