Happy Forever 49….

Happy Birthday Mark.   Today you would have been 52.  But you are forever 49.

We miss you – all of us.  We all miss you so incredibly much.

The immediate, can’t breathe, don’t know how to function pain has lessened, but the sudden can’t breathe, forgot he was dead for a moment but OMG he really is, hits me more often.

The grief storms are much shorter now.

Triggers that take me back to the moment keep me there for a day or two, instead of a week or two or three.

The moments of “I want to tell Mark…” that sucker punch me in the gut send me in a grief storm that lasts for an hour or two at most.

The grief is changing.

I’ll never *get over* losing you.

I’ll never *move on* from you.

But I will move forward.

I will grow.   The pain of losing you becoming part of me.  I will be the tree that grows around the object.

Tree growing around motorcycle

And I will thrive, despite?  because of?  the pain that your loss caused.

You are forever a part of me.

Happy Birthday my Love.

This Week

I’m somewhat surprised I’m not more emotional this week.

Mother’s Day 2015.

Alone-ish.  I was with someone I love in the morning… a lovely snuggle and time together.  He wished me happy Mother’s Day.

My kids got up.  My oldest-at-home made me breakfast.  No cards, no big to-do, just a simple breakfast, a hug and a lot of love from all my kids.

I miss the time and effort that was put in before.

And then Thursday morning.

Mark was an avid fisherman.  Loved everything to do with fly-fishing.  Loved watching shows.  Loved doing it.  Was going to teach me how the summer he died.

One of his favourite shows was “Sport Fishing On the Fly”

And then I saw this:

Sport Fishing

And the host.  And there was this instantaneous “OMG-I-HAVE-TO-TELL-MARK-FUCK-HE’S-DEAD” punch in the gut.

And right there… at the gas station… grief storm hits.

Crying on the way to work.  Big ugly sobbing tears.   Wishing I could talk to *someone* about it.

But really?  Who gets it?  Who understands?  Who would be able/willing to just let me lean into them… and be loved while I cried it out?

It’s been close to 3 years.  Specifically it’s been 3 years less 40 days.

I get things like… “why do you still grieve so hard?” and “shouldn’t you be moving forward?”

So who do I talk to? How do I tell someone that a fucking BOAT reduced me to tears?

I don’t even want to talk.  I just want to be wrapped up in his arms and cry until I’ve cried out and then move on with my day.

Instead… I cried my way to work… cleaned up my tears… put on more make up… and went in and smiled a lot.

And in 2 days… 2 more days.. it would have been his 52nd birthday. The man who was supposed to be 50 before I turned 40 will forever be 49…  Gawd… 52… I’m 41… we’ve got one grandbaby and another on the way… and he’s forever 49.

I had wanted to go to visit with his brother for his birthday.  His brother shares the same birthday as he does.  3 years apart.  (and there’s a sister in between!  Their mom must have lost her mind… LOL)

Unfortunately – fire season kicked in and I’m sitting 5 mins away from work in case I get a call.   So no camping with the brother-in-law and nephew for me and my boys.

Between Mother’s Day, the stupid boat, the birthday, and the relationship that is unsure and unsteady with a dash of WTF is going on mixed in… I’m feeling incredibly lonely.

I want the dead guy I love back (but don’t change my life because there’s lots about it I like).

I want the live guy I love to just pull me in his arms and love me until I’m ok again.

I am sitting, waiting for work to call.

The summer before Mark died, he went to visit with his brother on their shared birthday.  I was a little put out that I couldn’t go, that I wouldn’t be around to help celebrate his birthday, but overall, it was a good thing.

I insisted that they take a picture of the two of them on their birthday.

It has been Wade’s profile pic on Facebook since that day.

It reminds me… to take the moments.  Don’t say “next time” because next time, you might be saying goodbye.

Mark & Wade

Happy Birthday Mark & Wade.  I love you both.

Still Finding Dimes

When I first started finding dimes… I’d tuck them into my bra, and at the end of the night put them in my dime jar.

I still find dimes.  I still tuck them into my bra.

The best part about it now?  Forgetting they’re in my bra and re-finding them at the end of the day.

it’s like a double reminder that Mark is always around.

I am Unmedicated

This may not be a huge deal to a lot of you, but it is to me.

It’s the first time I’ve been deliberately unmedicated in years.   As in, I made a consious choice to be unmedicated.  As in.  I weaned myself off my medication and still have half a prescription full of them.

And I’m sitting here, knowing I have to study for my biology exam tomorrow, and realizing I’m dealing with a freaking anxiety attack.

Not over my exam – I’ll be fine.

But the generalized anxiety that I was hoping was gone forever.

It doesn’t seem to be.

It seems to be a permenant resident in my life.

I don’t want it to be.  And I don’t want to be medicated.

I think back to the things that I could do to alleviated it, without medication.

And the things I’ve used in the past?  Not available to me right now.

Sex was one of them.

Sensations were another.

Anything that would get me out of my head, in my body and centre myself.

And mostly – I got them from my husband.   After my husband, I tried alcohol… I tried drugs… I tried many things.

But none of them were the same as what he did.

My ex?  He was amazing at helping me get to a happy place.

Now… I’m alone… and anxious.  And unable to get to my happy place, my centred place, my wonderful place of peace.

I miss that.  The happy place. I miss him being able to reach over and pull me out of my anxiety.

And I am unmedicated.

I’ll find it eventually… But for now… I have to find my happy place on my own…and soon.  I have a biology exam tomorrow.

The Grief Storm

I think the grief storm set off by Grey’s Anatomy is passing.

It’s been almost 2 days since Derek died, since Meredith had to agree to terminate life support.

Almost 2 days since I was triggered back in time to relive that day.

I realized last night when I was telling someone else what had happened and I managed to tell it without my voice hitching, without tears welling, that the storm was passing.

You see – this is how I know that the healing, the learning to live without him, the moving forward in life is happening.

A grief storm lasts a day or two, not a week or two.

It doesn’t take over my life, it just puts me in that place for a short time.

Even then – in the middle of the grief storm, I still managed to finish a 1500 word research paper, go to my last class before finals, and do a recycling run.  Even in the middle of what would have debilitated me before, I was still functioning.

Grief is so very overwhelming. It is so intense, so painful, so horribly mind-numbing at first.  It destroys you.  It leaves you struggling to breathe, struggling to get through one moment at a time.

But it doesn’t stay that way.  It eventually eases, and there’s joy again.  And you plan a life, you build a future without your person.  And when a grief storm hits… it affects you for a while… then lets go again.

For you who’s reading this in your first year, second year… it does get better.  Even on days it doesn’t feel like it is, it does.   Eventually the balance works out, and you have more days of joy than you do of sadness.

I still love Mark.  Enormously.  I still love him, miss him, talk to him.  I have days where the grief is more than I can bear.

But it did get better.  And it still is.  It’s easier to live with, the missing him. It has become a part of my skin, a part of who I am.

Heart Memorial Boys My_Bruised_Heart_by_murtada_king (1)

They Did It Again…

****GREY’S ANATOMY SPOILERS CONTAINED BELOW****

I am a huge fan of Grey’s Anatomy.  It’s the only show I have watched since day one.   The show has never been formulaic, never been repetitive in how the plots are carried out, it has been fairly realistic and at the same time enough fantasy to keep things interesting (because lets face it, sometimes real is boring)

In September of 2012 – they killed off Mark Sloan.   He was in a plane crash, had some undiagnosed internal bleeding, and ended up on life support.   The entire season opener was watching him while it crept to the time where the machines were going to be shut off.   And then they shut them off.  And I fucking BAWLED because it was so close to home….  we turned off life support for my Mark only 3 months prior.

I figured I was in the clear.  They wouldn’t kill off another major character like that.   Then the next week, the episode was all about the month leading up to him being in the coma.   And the turning off of the machines.

Ok.  Done.  Again.  Can we get back to the story line please?

Seattle Grace Hospital recovered.  The people recovered.  The storyline became less dramatic.    I enjoyed the show again.

And then… last night…. OMG last night.  They fucking did it AGAIN!!!  Derek was in a car accident.   The doctors at the hospital screwed up, and he was on life support.   And Merideth had to turn off the machines.   And… almost 3 years later… I’m pretty sure this is just about fucking killing me.

How do you explain to someone who’s not a widow, who didn’t have to watch their spouse die how a TV show can rip you apart?  How it can take you right back to that moment when the doctors are telling you there’s NOTHING MORE THAT THEY CAN DO??

The show managed to emotionally devastate me.    All I wanted was to curl up in someone’s arms and bawl.  That’s still all I want to do.   But I get to carry on… because I am the parent for my boys, I am strong, I survived this once and I will survive it again.

Tears are healing.  I knew that when I started watching Grey’s Anatomy a couple weeks ago.  And I’ve healed a lot of the pain from my ex.   I just wasn’t expecting this… dammit.

Heartbeat Grey's Anatomy

It’s Been a While

I want to write, I really do.  But I have a confluence of messed up things keeping from writing.

I have spent a lot of time crying lately.   It’s something about letting down your walls, becoming entirely vulnerable and fully open only to have someone shatter you.

You see, we were trying, one last time.  My ex and I.  We were giving it one more shot.   I had some issues.  I was concerned about those issues.  And we got into a fight about those issues.   And he did something he’d never done before.  And at that moment… the walls came down.    All boxes open.  The grief and vulnerability over the dead husband.  The intense love of the live man in front of me.  All open.  And in the middle of a sentence… he got up and left.

Done.

Over.

And in that moment… my heart shattered.

All the boxes that had been opened.. every one of them suddenly jumbled together.

So now… for the past week… I have been actively grieving again.

Grieving over the loss of the man I was supposed to spend my life with, until he died.

Grieving over the loss of the man I was hoping to spend my life with, until he walked out.

Grieving the loss of a future I’d planned for 14 years, until he died.

Grieving the loss of a future I’d hoped for with the man I moved 8 hours to be with, until he walked out.

For him – there’s a whole lotta reasons why we didn’t work.

For me – it came down to one.  And he walked out when I mentioned the dead guy’s name.

So for the past week, I’ve been actively grieving.  I have been watching Grey’s Anatomy on a marathon basis.  And bawling my face off.  Denny died.  Kathryn Heigl did an amazing job of portraying a grieving widow.  I bawled.  Other people died.  Other people got hurt.  Major characters went through transformative, emotional moments.

And I bawled.

It’s easy to say that I’m crying over the show, but in truth, I’m grieving.  I’m back in the place I was shortly after Mark died… all of it due to me dropping my walls far enough and completely enough for him to walk out and shatter me.

And he has no idea.

I haven’t told him.

I won’t.

The closest I’ve come is when he texted me something and I mentioned that I was struggling and I really couldn’t do this at this time.

But he has no idea how much I’m hurting.

Grieving again… it sucks.  I am the queen of disassociation.  I am good at putting things in boxes.  I am amazing at compartmentalizing and not letting the different parts of my life touch.

Until it overwhelms me.

Until the boxes open.

Until everything is all mixed up, jumbled up, and I’m grieving again.

I really really really want to be looked at like my husband looked at me.  Like Derek Shepherd looks at Meridith Grey.  I really really want that again… but in the meantime… I’m grieving.

Grey's Anatomy