Epiphanies

I’ve been having a number of small epiphanies lately.

The first started with my counselor.    Oh.  I forgot to mention (or really, have just been too fricken busy to blog) that I finally got in to see a counselor.  Lovely lady.  Just who I need.  Doesn’t sugar coat.  Doesn’t have that soft gentle let’s be nice crap that a lot of counselors do.  She’s kind… but blunt and to the point.

So the first epiphany.

I GET TO BE PICKY.

Seems like common knowledge doesn’t it?  I get to be picky.

If I want a redhead who wears glasses, laughs like the “Navigator” and is passionate about fishing…. well… I’d mostly be trying to replace my husband.

But if one of my deal breakers is that he’s shorter than me…THAT’S OK.  Because I get to be picky.

if I expect that whomever I’m involved with will be living caring and supportive on my wedding anniversary when I’m crying over a dead guy…. THAT’S OK.  Because I get to be picky.

If I want to wear my pendant with my husband’s ashes in it on a date and I expect my date to be ok with that, THAT’S OK. Because I get to be picky.

You see…. I’m who I am. I love deeply.  I love strongly.  And I love to a depth that will affect me for the rest of my life.

I have family, friends who cringe when I post things about my husband’s death.   They grieve in their own way.  For me… the memories don’t go away if I don’t share them.  They fester.  They infect and inflame and I end up laying on my bed again wondering why I bother.

They can grieve how they want.  I will grieve in a way that I need to.  As hard as I need to.  As long as I need to.

And anyone I’m involved with will have to accept that.

Because I’m allowed to be picky.

I got lucky with my dead guy.  He was amazing.  I wasn’t picky…. it was happenstance.

This time…. I am going to be picky.   Because there are other men/women out there who are just amazing as my dead guy.

And he or she is looking for me.

On His 15th Birthday

The last birthday my son got to share with his father was his 11th.  The pictures are amazing.  I was, as usual, the picture taker, and caught an amazing picture of Andrew and Mark hugging over the shiny new bike.

There have been 4 birthdays since then. His 12th was spent in a hospital room with his dad.

His 13th, 14th and now 15th…?  As a fatherless child.

I’ve tried to make birthdays something special.

I’ve tried to live and love and parent as if Mark were still here.

I don’t know if I’ve succeeded.

I don’t know if Mark would have approved of the double bladed sword-type thing I gave Andrew for his 15th.  (Honestly I’m not sure if *I* approve LMFAO)

But I’m doing my best.

3 birthdays without his dad.  3 birthdays where he’s had to grow up, learn to be a man, figure out what adult men are supposed to be like and for the most part, aside from a year with my ex, he’s had a woman to try to teach him.

I wanted different for my boys.  I don’t know how to raise boys.  Hell – when my oldest was going through puberty (and there WAS a male figure there) I got a book on puberty to try to understand what the hell was going on with his body.

Boys are icky and weird and I’m supposed to be the mother of girls.

But I wouldn’t trade my son’s for anything.

Somehow, despite me, they are growing into amazing young men.  Not a lot of initiative (yet) but responsible when given a list.  Caring, loving, kind.

And my baby… my husband’s first (biological) born… is now 15.  And he’s turning into an incredible young man.

I wish Mark were here to see it.

Andrew 15th Birthday

(double bladed sword thingy – untwist the handle and it’s got a chain between it – bladed nunchucks?)

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.