in the Language of Flowers, the sunflower means "adoration" and the daisy means "loyal love."
for the last three Tuesday's, and from now on until she is better, my phone rings at 9:05 PM. you can set your clock by it. a widow i have gotten to know in this new city needs me to talk her home. she gets off work at 9 and always before she'd call her husband to talk with for the drive. he'd be waiting there with lights on and a warm supper waiting.
i've offered myself as a very poor substitute. i stay on the phone with her, either as a sounding board or to fill her ear as she sobs while driving, until she is safely home, the lights are on, and the door is locked.
J-in-Wales's most recent post was of her and her husband's schedule and how it's so different. he worked away from home all week and she looked forward to the weekends, and the calls every night. there would be the news of the day exchanges, the shared stories, and the quiet "i love yous" to slowly end the call. it's another thing she has had to adjust to, endure.
at my daughter's wedding, a list formed in my mind of more things i missed because my Dragon died. they are like razors that cut from the inside out. i fell apart once during the day and got to the restroom. i looked in the mirror and saw a woman i didn't know. she looked shell shocked, haunted, and so sorrowful it hurt to see her. this is how i appear now. lost in a world of pain i can't get out of and am not doing too much to try to.
since the wedding i had a bad turn from the ex that got rectified by my son and more little things to add to my list, and a new list forming in my head.
it all brings me to this. it seems, and i'll just say i here because i don't know if J-in-Wales would really agree or if the Tuesday night widow would either, but i am still taking inventory over what i lost when my Dragon died. it's like a robbery and the police make you write up a list of what is missing. you think you have it all, but then weeks and months down the road, something else is missing and you have to add it to the list. belated but through the panic and shock, you didn't know it was yet missing.
immediately i lost my best friend. i lost my lover. i lost my husband. i lost the only man i could ever love. i lost the only man who has ever seen my scars besides the one who put them there and a doctor here and there. i lost the only person who could keep me safe. i lost the one who had loosened my laugh. i lost the only person who'd ever loved me even after he'd seen me eccentricities and all.
his funeral was on Valentine's Day - a day that will forever be shrouded in sorrow. it is also the day i drove out of our little village by the ocean and drove 1209 kilometers to where i am now. i lost being able to see the ocean and pick up shells for him, for my shrines.
in the first couple of weeks, i realized he always made my pitcher of tea. magic tea we called it because it was one of the little things he liked doing for me. he'd keep watch and then take the pitcher from me when he saw it was empty and he'd make more. i have come to realize i've lost our getting ready for bed together and our whispering in the dark. we always went to bed together, neither one of us staying up beyond the other. bed together. whispers in the dark. spooning to fall asleep.
and with the email from the ex after the wedding, i realized that i not only lost my Dragon, but i've lost a man who is elemental, who knows how to turn a phrase into a veiled threat to protect me from someone who is at the very least a sociopath. i'm vulnerable at a time when i am on my knees begging God for just some acknowledgment that i'll get to go be with him when it's my time.
my inventory will never be done of all the little things i miss since my Dragon died.
enter my son, my youngest. twenty-three and so handsome. he's a gentle spirit with the mind of an intellectual and the heart of a poet. he's a teacher at the university he attended. he teaches 3D and 4 D Cinema animation - computer stuff. he's done work for Universal Studios and a lot of his free lance can be seen in the commercials and transitions on the Golf Channel. he's 6'4" of kindness and decency, a soft heart who likes to read. the toughest thing he does is go surfing and play paintball.
but he loves me and though i thought he was sheltered from what he father is, i suddenly realize he knows. he knows almost all. enough to break my heart and make me ashamed that it happened to me. but he doesn't believe i was a doormat. he knows i was trapped financially. what i didn't know was that he can confront.
my Dragon could do it with words that were aggressive and that held promises he could and would execute. my son did it with shame. i've never seen shame work on the ex before but it did when it came from my son, his son. truth and shame were very effective. and my son's follow up email stated this: "i love you, mom. you made me the man i am today. only you. i won't let anything happen to you. you are safe. i know you miss him and i can't fix that, but i can promise to protect you as he would. call me anytime for anything. i'm here now."
so as i said, my inventory of what i miss now that the Dragon has gone ahead will be endless. but i have a new inventory to take. my son knows more and more what i went through. his father isn't as careful with his mask now. my son is having to handle his father, not like a son, but like a man who is protecting someone. it's heartbreaking.
and now, randomly, i have a question i'd like to put out here for anyone who cares to respond. since my daughter's wedding, i've been dreaming more and more fitfully, and waking up exhausted. i dream he's still here, that nothing bad happened. but even in my dream part of me knows it's only a dream and i'm so sad. then i wake up startled, suddenly. and i'm bereft. i want to just go back to sleep so i can see him again and have that interaction. but, and i guess thankfully, my dogs prevail or i think i would sleep a lot. has anyone done this? the dreams that they were still with their spouse? am i losing it but only at night? though the day could be speculated on.