A year ago, I was taking it easy after a pulmonary embolism knocked me off my feet and landed me in the hospital for five days. At the same time, I was polishing up the final details for Dave’s party. When I look back at that time it seems a long, long time ago.
2015 me is wondering how the hell I survived.
Apparently, there is a protective cloud of sorts that settles over your life after a traumatic event. We went through the motions. We worked and went to school. We celebrated occasions. Through the numbness, we trudged forward. A year later that cloud has lifted and we are left with the unfiltered, stark reality – (as I read recently in an article shared by two of my closest friends) “Our spouses just keep being dead.”
This fall has been hard. More difficult in many ways than last. It is not that we haven’t made progress. I don’t cry every day. I remember the funny and the good more than the devastating and the end. But I am tired. And it is hard being an only parent. And lonely. I avoid being around couples at all costs as it just reminds me that I am not part of one any longer. I am short on sympathy. And judgmental. At the same time, I am aware that our story is NOT the most tragic. I just have to turn on the news to realize that.
So, warts and all, that’s where I am. I am dreading the birthday/Thanksgiving/Christmas season while at the same time aware that we will be making new memories and enjoying time as a family too. A very strange mixed bag of life.
Dave’s birthday is Friday. I have some thoughts on how we might honor him on that day (or any day, really). Perhaps if you knew him or were touched by his story in some way, you will check back on Friday.
PS Here is a link to the article I referenced, if you are interested.