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.

Monday, May 7, 2012

home to the puzzle box ~ my grief at 3 years 3 months

first off, don't be startled with the first "song."  it really is what you're hearing.  i found a fog horn.  keep reading.  it has meaning.

i'm ahead of myself.  it won't be 3 years, 3 months until tomorrow night at midnight, but i have a bit of time this afternoon, taking a break from embroidery work, and i wanted to get my thoughts down.

at this point in my life, i sincerely believe what i wrote up there in gold under my main photo.  i had once thought of my whole life as a journey.  i was arrogant, and so very wrong.  it was simply my life.  now that my Dragon has died, i am truly on a journey.  grief, dealing with his death and all the questions, guilt, and fears that came with it; this is my journey.

in the days and weeks that followed his death i used to ask myself, why did we only get 8 years?  why had all the terrors of my life lead me to the warmth of his love, only to take it away after so short a time?  i told myself, i have convinced myself, that his death was predestined and that his guardian angel was not going to let him die alone.  after the life he lead, the missions he went on as a Marine, all the times he must have wondered, "will i die out here and nobody come claim my body," all the times he came home wounded, the fears he must have had, he died with me holding him, giving him CPR, talking to him, soothing him, telling him he was so very dearly loved.

and it is me left to deal with what's left all alone.

i read once that "death ends a life, but it does not end a relationship, which struggles on in the survivor's mind towards some resolution which it may never find."  in my experience that is true.  my relationship with my husband has not ended.  i still wear my wedding rings.  at this point, i most likely always will.  i cannot take them off without feeling claustrophobic.

i do have my memories of him, of where we walked, of our little place by the ocean, up in the cove.  there was  a small gate off our property that we walked through to get to the beach.

 we had to walk through our gate and across the top of the ridge to get down to the beach because we were set up a bit high.

this view is from the back yard, looking southeast towards Thatcher light.

and this is from the edge of our backyard looking east northeast toward what i always called, my island.

this the view looking out from the den toward "my island" that i saw everyday.  we'd hear the fog horn sound sometimes, especially at night, and know that lonely sound was reaching out to any mariner who was still out there trying to find their way home.  we'd listen to the wind rattle the windows.

i took this set of three photos the day before one Thanksgiving.  a nor'easter was expected that night with high winds.  i loved those nights.
he and i would lay together upstairs in our small bedroom under the eves and snuggle.  we'd hear the ice hit the glass behind our headboard.

i hold onto those memories when i drive the now half hour to work and all i see is concrete and red earth and traffic.  i humbly thank God for my job that pays my way to survive, but when i am back at the apartment with my little Carmen Sophia and my dashing Scootie Wootums, i remember when i could walk them on the beach.  i remember when we would sit and laugh at them bite at the water rushing the sand and rocks.

i remember feeling the sunshine on my skin and the wind in my hair.  i remember the smell of salt and the sound of gulls and water.

oh, and that Thanksgiving morning?  we woke to this.
i miss him terribly.  i miss him and still sometimes cry.  i miss him in songs i hear.  i wish i could tell him things.

i talked to a widow i know who lives across the Pond in Europe, and she agreed with me.  she and i will probably never look for another man.  she is two months longer into her widow journey than i so we are at the same place time-wise, and seem to be at the same place emotionally.

we miss them.  we are doing what we can to make this journey tolerable.  she in her way.  me in mine.

i look for peace.  i try to create it when i cannot find it.  and i tell myself that i'm doing alright when what i feel is sort of the opposite.  i am lonely, but not for anyone but him.  only he will do.  i look at myself and say, "you're out of the box."  we were a puzzle that had two pieces.  he is back in the box.  i am still out here in the world struggling to make sense of what's left.  he got to where he was supposed to be, but it was much too soon for me.  he left me behind.  our timelines were off.

in every life there comes a journey.  maybe we think we choose it, but i don't think so.  i think it chooses us.  i am what i am making of myself with what life has left me with, which, compared to what i had, isn't much.  well, it certainly isn't as scenically beautiful.

i miss the ocean.  i miss the snow.  i miss the wind, water, gulls, and the fog horn.  i sometimes wonder if, when i dream i hear that fog horn, it really is sounding off up there and is reaching out to me trying to call me home.  home to the ocean's edge.   home to the beach i knew and loved.

or maybe that fog horn i still here in my mind and in my heart is letting me know that it is out there in the fog i cannot see through, the fog of what's to come; letting me know i have a sound to walk towards so i can find my way home.........

home to the puzzle box where my darling, beautiful Dragon's piece sits and waits for me.


judemiller1 said...

The way I feel too--don't want another man--just want Fred. The other day I tried to make myself feel better by thanking God for taking Fred so quickly. At least our boys didn't linger in a long disease that we had to watch take them down. They were with us one moment and gone the next. I guess we can be grateful for that? Maybe?

Sandy said...

I don't think wanting or not wanting another man is a sign of healing. I have seen you heal in many ways over the time I have known you. And yes, even move forward in your grief.

Boo said...


Atik Box said...

home to the puzzle box ~ my grief at 3 years 3 months...........

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