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Being a Widow

My experience of dealing with grief as a widow

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Today I wept

04 July 2011

Angel,

I finally broke down and wept uncontrollably today. 

I went through more of your stuff. Our stuff. My stuff. What was yours is now mine. I don't want it. I want you.

Going through the pile of paperwork on the desk, I decided to clear up old stuff. So I spent the day shredding old bank statements from years ago. Yours, mine, ours. All gone.

The receipts for the purchases we made from the joint account. The bed, the fridge, the computer, the matress... Symbols of a future we built but no longer have. I kept them. I am not yet ready to throw our future away. It's too much part of the past and present still.

I got the new chequebook for what used to be our joint account. I would prefer  to still use the cheques with your name on them. Just feels less final. 

I am sorry but I threw away the mountain of printed articles that your PhD generated. I know you have all the stuff on your USB drive so nothing is lost. 

Finally, I came to the boxes of clothing. I have no plans to throw your clothes away but I opened the box and the pain just exploded around my entire body. I wept. I wailed. I screamed. I sank to my knees and buried my head in the box. I snotted all over your Neill Finn shirt. About 45 minutes, until my face was in pain.

I thought I was doing well. I am functioning well. I cry a little every day. I feel lonely every day. I miss you every day. But until today, I had not yet felt the darkness of your death. The immense hole in my life, in my heart, in my future. The desperate guilt about what you had to go through. That guilt is a whole different story that I am not ready to deal with yet.

Silly me for thinking I did not have to go through all stages of grief. That I might somehow skip bits. That I was somehow better at this grieving thing than all the other people I talk to.

I was wrong. I cried myself to sleep last night. Indoubt tonight will be different.

It has begun in earnest and I must face it head on.

I miss you so, so much. I would cut off my arms to have you back. Throw my legs in for good measure. For just another minute with you.

I love you.

"No one ever told me grief felt so like fear" - C.S. Lewis

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