It feels like I’ve been trapped in this new place for an age – and that the wound is still fresh. I cry as much now as I ever did. I still miss him intensely and constantly. But I am moving through life more easily. I feel less fragile and fractured. My heart is as tied to him as ever – in that sense I haven’t moved forward. But I have made peace with some of the peripheral struggles. I’ve stopped trying to replay those last days into a new shape with a happy ending; I have forgiven myself for failing to save him. I still hate the waste of all that talent and potential but it’s a smaller part of my grief.
Mostly, I just miss him. I miss his company, and his humor. I miss our conversations. I miss his cooking. I miss hanging out with him in pajamas, sipping cappucino’s, and reading on a lazy Saturday morning. I miss the interest and enthusiasm he brought to each new topic. I miss leaning on him for knowledge and advice. I miss his voice. I miss his silent chuckle. I miss how we played off of each other in conversations with others.
I’ve picked up most of the responsibilities he used to handle now, including some of the most intimidating ones like filing taxes and managing paperwork and repairs at our rental property. I’m starting to get a handle on our home network and am picking up skills that will allow me to finish some home projects. My anxieties around these unknowns are gone and some of the background stress is fading.
My next challenge will be going through his things and starting to find homes for them. I will probably bring in some of my helper ‘elves’ to get that moving since I’m having so much trouble getting started. It’s definitely the largest practical boogeyman left to conquer. On the emotional front there are a couple of big challenges coming up soon, our anniversary, and my trip home to his family, to scatter his ashes.
The year I have taken off should be about right to finish getting my new world in order. There are still a lot of tasks to accomplish but I should be done by then. It’s the emotional recovery that I can’t put a timeline on. I don’t see a whole person in my future – or at least not a happy one. I feel like my best years are gone. I don’t expect to experience real happiness again.