how did i get here?

my husband, my beautiful Dragon, died suddenly at 12:03 AM on 9 February 2009. there was a cold, lovely full moon and 3 feet of snow on the ground. i "slept" for the following 10 months and "woke" to the physical and emotional pain and torments of deep grief. i "woke" to find i had moved the day of his funeral and that i am lost. i am looking for me while i figure out the abstract, unanswerable questions that follow behind any death. my art has evolved. his death changed that as well because i am forever changed and will forever bear the mark of losing the only man i can ever love.
there is alive and there is dead and there is a place in between. i am here wholly in my heart for my children, but i feel empty inside at this time. i miss him. i have not gotten very far in my grief journey. i make no apologies for this.
this is my place, my blog, where i write to tell the universe that i am still here.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

human nature

i had a good day with my daughter yesterday. we only had a couple of errands to run and then we came back to my apartment. i showed her all that i am working on. i showed her sketches of plans for future projects. she gave me jeans to repair. she gets embroidery and patches done for free because she's my BabyLove.

and we talked.

my background on my computer is ever-changing photos of my Dragon. our Dragon. she was watching them change and she'd ask where we were when i took this one, and that one. she knows the stories but she knows i need to talk about him. i love to talk about him. and that's human nature.

it is human nature to miss someone so deeply that your life is forever changed if they go.

i ventured to tell her some truths about me. she told me she could handle it. she's an adult now, 26. God, i remember 26. i gave birth to her on my 26th birthday. but growing up as she did watching me divert, dissuade, and deflect her father's --- attitude --- gave her a maturity some more sheltered and nurtured children do not have. so she wanted to hear.
i told her his dying was terrible. terrible to see and terrible as i face living without him as i grieve the loss of the one person who loved me unconditionally. i told her i will always be this way though i will improve as time passes. i will smile more and laugh more. she knows i am better than i was at this time even 6 months ago, but she also is aware i am different. and i won't be able to go back to the person i was when i was safe in his loving arms.

i told her dreams die hard and that we had found a house we loved. the backyard, of which is in the photo above, backed onto the harbor and we could see the island from almost every window of the house that faced south and east. i told her that i will always love that old stone fort and wish we could have lived there. i told her i would not have moved here if he and i had lived there. i told her i would have stayed and lived alone always surrounded by him, my memories, the ocean, and the storms that rolled in.

i told her there can never be another. i know that they say never say never but my Dragon was such a man that i do not believe anyone can move into my view. i won't see them. i can't. my Dragon was an adventurer at heart. he was a closet intellect and as voracious a reader as me. he loved being outside as much as i did (do) and he showed me that i could climb out to a world i would have previously been afraid to. he gave me strength and hope and loved away my scars until i did not see them anymore. now that he is gone, i see them again. and i feel the loss of his loving gaze very much.

i told her he made me laugh. and i made him laugh. he thought i was funny, and sweet. he liked that i got "drifty" - his word for my absorption at the beauty of the world around us. he said he loved being my "camera bitch" and taking care of me, making sure i drank enough water, didn't walk off the edge of a cliff, or fall into the ocean. he got use to my adoration of him. i told him every day how much i loved him, how handsome i thought he was, and he didn't mind that i told him multiple times a day. i hero worshipped him and he was humbled by it, but he needed my loving attention as much as i needed his. we truly were meant to be a couple. "if two were one then surely we." from the poem. we were one; finishing each others sentences, starting the same sentence at exactly at the same time and always laughing, marveling that our minds were so alike. it sounds stupid and untrue but i don't care. no one was there with us to hear it. but i know it's true and i feel the loss of that kind of unity very much. i will never be the same.

i told my daughter that i miss him as much today as i did the moment he died. i told her i believe i will miss him as much 10 years from now as i do today. that will not change. we married for love. i am not a young woman anymore, middle aged. he was my second husband. and i will say it again. i married him because i love him so deeply that being without him was unimaginable. and it still is. but the reality is i have to face each minute without him, each one knowing i won't see him again in this lifetime. and i can only pray and live my quiet kind of life trying to earn the privilege of being allowed to be with him again.

my daughter is fully aware of my self-esteem issues and how our Dragon was healing me. but since his death, and my having to deal with my ex without Dragon's protection, i have suffered a loss of my hold on where i was. i feel a little guilty that i have not drawn on my knowledge of my Dragon's love to fix this but i try to be kind and remind myself that i am just coming out of the first year of shock facing the fact that he is really gone. this year i am setting myself on the task of not letting him destroy what my Dragon was reviving in me. what is said will hit me. i cannot prevent that, but i will try not to let it tear me down. i know now that i can be loved. my Dragon loved (he loves) me. i just also need to work on the concept that God loves me as well.

human nature is what it is. this is my nature. it is in my nature to always love my Dragon. William Tammeus wrote: "You don't really understand human nature unless you know why a child on a merry-go-round will wave at this parents every time around - and why his parents will always wave back." who knows why one person will choose to live alone and grieve for someone for the rest of their life, and wait until they can be together again after this life is finished?

don't answer that. only i know the answer. and my answer will only pertain to me.

ah, Dragon, my love. i miss you.


judemiller1 said...

How wonderful to have your daughter to share your feelings with and...she wants to know and understands. Years from now, when perhaps she is going through the same thing, she will remember your words and they will help her.

I still remember my Grandma--she was widowed at age 48, telling me when I was 15 and asked why she had never remarried, she said, "I had the best and no one could ever compare to Roy. My love for him has never died and it would be useless to even think of being with someone else."

From reading your words--now I realize what my Grandma meant and how she felt.

judemiller1 said...

I forgot to add: the day my Grandma died, she had been dozing on and off and all of a sudden, she sat up in bed, pointed to the door and said, "Roy is here to get me." Then she fell back and died. She had been widowed 39 years and yet...

Your Dragon will come to get you too someday..never doubt that.

Split-Second Single Father said...

None of us will ever be the same again, and I think that's difficult for people who have not been widowed to understand. You have every right to remain single if you choose to do so, and don't let anyone tell you any differently.

I am glad you and your daughter have such a close relationship and that you can share as adults. I have a similar relationship with my parents and I think it is, quite sadly, a rare occurance in today's world.

I have mentioned before that I sense a hope in your posts that was not evident before the previous few months. But now there is an added sense of resolve. You seem to be owning your grief instead of letting it own you. It's a place we all get to at different times and by different means, but it's a huge step in our personal healing process. It makes my heart happy to see that happening in you.

Dan, in real time. said...

I loved this post. You have such a wonderful relationship with your daughter. I truly understand the immense pleasure in having someone interested in hearing you go on about Dragon. Those moments don't happen often enough. I really enjoy when you describe how your Dragon saw and experienced you. He always looks so pensive in the photos you share, and I can see that his thoughts are always on you. How special to be loved like that. I'm sure that in time you will rebuild the self-esteem that Dragon brought out in you. I know that for me, I feel like such a broken person right now, and it is often hard to remember how I felt before this happened. At times I can put words to it, but have trouble truly feeling what my own words describe.

Human nature is what makes us seek love. Human nature is what allows us to recognize it when we find it. Human nature is how I am able to take in your words, and truly identify and empathize with you.

Lovely thoughts.


womanNshadows said...

Jude, thank you for the story of your grandmother. it gives me hope.

SSSF, thank you for your words of encouragement. i can tell that i am more used to this sorrow. thank you for making it seem like a good thing. and in a lateral way it is. i am advancing. it's better than standing still.

Dan, i am blessed with the children i have. i have always been humble with that knowledge. my daughter and i are especially close as she is the oldest and i would task her to take her brother and leave the room through the door behind me. she grasped the nuances of certain things in life early on. too early. when i crumple, she reminds me over and over how much my Dragon loved me, adored me as much i i adored him. it wasn't one sided. i know you feel broken right now. i know the feeling well. but it's okay. we're not meant to get through this life unscathed. there was a print ad i saw that read: "Scars are tattoos with better stories." we'll have some really interesting stories to tell, won't we?

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