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Thursday, January 28, 2010

back to the beach

i am in florida. A place that brings back memories although Bruce was never on Captiva Island. But the thought of being in florida reminds me of our life in Tallahassee. I remember our move and that Bruce came down to get us situated before I (8 months pregnant) flew with our 2 year old to start our new life. He was gleeful as he called me upon his arrival to tell me that he found a Chinese restaurant with a salad bar. Just what a Jewish princess from NYC needed to round out her Chinese dining experience! And he was disappointed that I wasn't thrilled about the news.
Three weeks later our son was born-a true Tallahassee lad. And Bruce loved Florida almost as much as I hated it.
I also am reminded of our last trip as a family to Hilton Head, South Carolina. We celebrated his last birthday early in September 2008. As I walked the beach yesterday, I could help but think back to the wonderful time that we had that trip. The kids recalled the summers when we would drive for 2 days from Pennsylvania, singing Billy Joel and Harry Chapin songs and anticipating the beach and the change of scenery. It was a wonderful part of many summers. On the trip, that last September, we did some of our favorite things, like eating snow cones, playing miniature golf and going to the Wild Wing Cafe. Who knew then, that it would be our last trip together and my last trip with him.
And I have seen a few folks at this conference who I haven't seen since before his death. I am reliving the experience as I tell my tale. I am anticipating the last bit of time before the anniversary of his death-my first trip by myself since he died. Every night I want to call him and tell him how my conference is going, the usual routine when I was away. It helped me so to know that he was home cheering me on and anticipating my return. I would come back with gifts and stories to share and he so eagerly wanted me home. His favorite line was "So you are coming home tonight, right?"-so anxious to have me back home, always missing me so much, he hated for me to be away.
So much to miss, so much to grieve.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

counting down

Eleven months now and anticipating the year mark. It seems almost as if something will magically happen when it is a year. The best would be for him to knock at the door and announce it was all some horrible mistake. But I think that we anticipate the time passing for lots of things and why shouldn't the death of someone be on the list. We mark time, thinking that there is something to be gained when we see time march on.
In this case, what will the passing of the year signify? I am still really sad. Can still come to tears at the thought of the loss of him. One thing that has dulled is the shock-I guess one can get used to anything. I think it may be human nature to establish a routine and I have. But the pain is still there, sometimes so acute that I can fall to my knees and wail. Some of the time I am preoccupied and get busy with a task. Those are the moments when I ask myself if he really died-so certain am I that if I went home, he would open the day and give me a hug.
Life is overwhelming. Everyone I know has too many things to do and somehow I wish I can press reset and start over. I want things to change but also like the comfort of what is stable in my life. I seem forever to be conflicted.
I know what I will do. I will continue on with what has become my life, and try not to dwell on the loss, the sadness and the impossible tasks ahead. One foot in front of another. And I will wait until the path ahead seems certain.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

rocky road

It started Monday and got worse Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday was dismal as well, and Friday just a tad bit better. So sad this week. Last year at this time, Bruce was going in for minor surgery. And he sailed through without a hitch. Just a month before the death, I know that it is probably not connected but it is a bit unnerving anyway.

Some of my angst this week is the thought that the month is going to be this way. How can I survive the month in such emotional pain? Now that it has been almost a year, I expect as do others that I am doing better. But I do not feel like I am doing better right now. Does my anxiety about life get in the way and make the grieving worse? I do not know. Is it possible that I am mislabeling and mis attributing my feelings as loss? Everything relates to him being gone-when life is challenging I miss him more. Not only because I loved him so much, also because he was my safety net, that key element that enabled me to stretch out of my comfort zone because I knew that he was there.

And there are events that are coming up. The series of 3 day weekends. I remember last year being overjoyed at the Mondays home with him. We did work and then attended to house stuff together. I loved our 3 day weekends and remember last year so vividly, two within the month. And then Valentine's day-the last weekend with him. And it was a good weekend too. And finally the day of his death.

I am not sure what to do about the month ahead. Part of me wants to run away-find a cabin in the forest or a hotel room in some remote place and just let it wash over me. Part of me wants to ignore the dates, and just move on in complete denial. I have no repertoire, no menu of strategies to deal with this. And there is a part of me that recognizes this pain as important, necessary to feel part of him again. To remember fully what I had and lost. To bring him close to me.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

its been awhile

I haven't blogged for awhile. After the holidays, I felt so relieved and had a few ok days. Almost felt like I was moving along and the loss was not so in my face. I have been having coffee dates with widows, women some like me, some very different-all of us linked by the common theme of loss.
And then yesterday, I was struck by the fact that this was my last month before the year. The last month of memories from the year before. I can look back on the calendar and be prompted by the year before. It is like my last month of him-before I lose him forever and I am sad.