Grief X 2


This sucks.

First set of tears this season was yesterday when my daughter gave me an early Christmas present:

Katie Pregnancy Test

I had posted about it… then lost the post.  SO if the post magically shows up…well… yanno how heartbreaking it is for me to be a Nana without Grandpa here with me.

So tonight is Christmas Eve.   Christmas Eve has traditionally been for me a fun night of wine, wrapping and staying up too late and being exhausted.

I procrastinate.

A lot.

Last year was much the same – lots of wrapping.  Mike & I were fighting, so it wasn’t full of love and laughter so much as just get’er done.

But the next morning… oh my gawd… the next morning, I was awakened by a song that just filled me with love.. filled me with joy.   One More Sleep

Even now… that song makes me think of him, makes me think of our Christmas together.  I was so looking forward to a good Christmas this year…

Then our life fell apart.

Everything ended.

So this Christmas?

I get to grieve not only my husband not being here to celebrate the little man who’s going to turn 1 on his Auntie’s birthday (how cool is that!!) and sesame growing inside my daughter.. but I also get to grieve the loss of the man I was hoping to spend my life with.  And I get to listen to him doing his Christmas stuff with his kids.   And I get to grieve the loss of another love.

Grief sucks.

Loss sucks.

Death sucks.

Christmas?  Christmas doesn’t suck.  It’s just lonely this year.  *sigh*

Tree Decorating night  2013 Pictures 025

Merry Christmas

My heart is breaking today.

It has been breaking for the past couple weeks.

I have had  REALLY hard time getting into the Christmas spirit… and here it is Christmas Day and I’m alone again.

Last year, I was alone Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

This year, I’m alone.


I’ve talked to my mom, I’ve talked to a friend.  I had a friend over for coffee.

But the kids are playing with their toys and I’m sitting in my living room, alone.

Staring at his box.  Staring at his urn.  Wondering how to stop hurting so much over the past and what’s gone and focus on what’s in front of me and the love and joy in my life now.

I want to just be full of joy and remember Mark with the love he and I shared.   I want to look back on our life together and think of all the good stuff and be HAPPY about the time we shared and the path we walked together.

It was a good life.  It wasn’t perfect. It was all smiles and roses.  But it was good.

We had 14 years of learning each other.  Of building a history together.  Of creating a dance that was unique to us.

I would do it again, even knowing the outcome, the ending.  I would again… move with him, marry him, have his boys.  I would hold his hand and kiss his forehead as the life left his body.

I would do it all again.

I loved him, I LOVE him that much.



Moving on


Some days, I feel like I’ve accepted it all, that I’m at peace with what happened and life is just good.   Then others… the tidal wave of grief hits and I’m stuck riding the wave.

And I try to restrain it – try to control it – but I’m left in a worse position than when I started


Grey's Anatomy


I was told a long time ago that you grieve as hard as you love.  I love him enormously. I grieve for him enormously.

It’s been 18 months tomorrow.  My life has changed in so many ways.   Some things remain the same.

I love him.

I miss him.



Eighteen Months

I find it hard to believe that it’s been almost 18 months without Mark.

The days leading up to the 26th are always especially poignant, particularly painful, but for some reason, these days seem harder.

Christmas maybe?

I don’t know.

What I know is that it is 2am, my boyfriend is snoring beside me, my eyes are burning with the need to sleep but my body won’t shut down.

It’s not for lack of trying.

I’ve closed my eyes. I’ve tried to fall asleep.  I’ve done deep, meditative breathing.

My body just won’t fall asleep.

And then there’s the man snoring beside me.

No matter how many times I get him to roll over, within minutes, he’s facing me again, snoring.

And not gentle snores.  *sigh*

But I’m coming up on 18 months.  I’m determined that this will be a wonderful, cheery Christmas.

That the tears won’t overwhelm me.

That the pain won’t consume me.

I won’t be alone this Christmas – my daughter, my two youngest sons, my step sons and my boyfriend will all be here.

It doesn’t change the facts.   This is the 2nd Christmas without him.  Another milestone.

I’m curious why it seems harder as time goes on?  Shouldn’t it be getting easier?  These “dates”?

I wish I could sleep.  That… that would just be perfect.  I have a 9am appointment tomorrow – I need sleep.

Eighteen months.   It seems like a lifetime.  It seems like yesterday.  I still look around wondering WTF happened to my life…

Life Is Short

Twin Rivers of Emotion

It’s been said that hate is the opposite of love.  That sorrow is the opposite of joy.

That, my friends, is simply untrue.

Hate and love and sorrow and joy – they are all the opposite of apathy and indifference.

Feeling versus not feeling.

Some days I’d like the “not feeling” because the feeling is just a bit too intense at times.

As the holidays approach, as I create a lovely Christmas for my family, the level of joy I feel about my first Christmas with my new love and his boys is directly proportional to the level of sorrow I feel that we’re spending another Christmas without Mark.

It’s entirely possible to feel two things at once.  To feel happiness and sadness together, like twin rivers of emotion running through my body, running through my soul.

Some days, the river of joy catches me and carries me along.  Some days the river of sorrow catches me and pulls me into it.

Some days… I’m fighting to stay upright as they both pull at me.

Christmas hurts.  Christmas is awesome.  Christmas is joy.  Christmas is love.  Christmas is sorrow.

I want to just feel one or the other – the constant tug of both is exhausting…

All I want for Christmas

One Year Ago…

I was so so deep in grief… I don’t know how I managed to survive that first 6 months.

I was angry.

I was at peace.

I was all over the place.

Now… I’m just here… low level depression and sadness punctuated with deep grief and intense joy.

Not nearly as all over the place as I was, and much more relaxed about life.

I still miss you Mark.  Almost 18 months since you’ve been gone.

Mark's Urn

I Survived 6 Months

It was hard, painful and I cried.  A lot.

I think my least favourite thing in the world is when I’m crying and someone asks “What’s wrong?”


My husband died.

I’m still grieving.

That’s what’s wrong.

I woke up this morning, cleaned my room, and cried some more.

I’m still sad, but I had a better afternoon and evening.

But yesterday was hard, sucky and hurt a lot.

I miss Mark.  It’s not fair.  He was one of the really good, amazing people in life… and it’s not fair that he’s not here…


Yeah. Ok. I’m Angry.

Seriously angry.

I’ve been trying to maintain calm, acceptance, and peace.

Mostly succeeding.

But I’m angry.  I’m pissed.

My first Christmas, without my husband, and my mother decides to take off to another country.  Not only that, on Christmas Day, she’s unreachable.    Yes, she called.   Right as we were opening gifts so I couldn’t chat.

But she left.

And my best friend, who I KNEW had plans – it didn’t bother me – was out of town on Christmas Eve and at her in-laws on Christmas Day.   That was ok.  I got it.

But she checked with my daughter to make sure that she would be here over Christmas for me…. made sure that I wouldn’t be left alone.

My daughter left.   After dinner, she went home, despite having plans to stay here overnight on Christmas Eve/morning.   She did, however, come back on Christmas morning.

My son left.  He went an hour and a half away to pick up his new girlie (who’s very nice, btw) and bring her home to meet mama.  They got in around 10, after everyone else had left, and after eating something, promptly went to his room.   Unfortunately there’s no soundproofing between his room and mine (upstairs to downstairs) and I was unable to sleep.   His music wasn’t *quite* louder than they were.   Once they came up for air, I went to bed.

Christmas Day night… ?? my older kids went to my daughter’s house to drink.

And my Boxing Day plans were cancelled.

Yeah.  I’m angry.  I was left ALONE most of the Christmas holidays.    Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, the worst possible time for me to be alone, and I was left alone.

I get it, I’m not the centre of everyone’s world.   I get that my friends have their family obligations, and that doesn’t bother me.  I get that “George’s” daughter is staying longer and family comes first and that doesn’t bother me.

I just don’t get being left completely alone.

Kids could have drank here.

My mother could have chosen to leave on December 27.

My husband could have fucking tried harder.

I could be married instead of a widow.

But he fucking died on me.

And so I was alone.   And I’m angry.


Survivor’s Guilt

A couple weeks before Mark died, I had a conversation with my favourite nurse about Mark, if it was his time, and the discussion involved survivor’s guilt.

We talked about some people who feel they could have done more.  Or did too much.  Or those who lived while their loved one died.

I don’t feel guilt over any of those things.   We did everything we could, pushed only as far as was a benefit to him.  As long as he was willing to fight, so was I, but when he was done… I let go.

I understood that.  I understood his decision.  I understood the WHY of his decision.  I probably would have made the same decision at that point.

I feel no guilt about where we went in his treatment, or where we stopped.

What I feel guilt about, what I feel bad about, is when I feel happy.

I feel guilt when I feel joy in the moment, when I’m enjoying life, when I “forget” for a moment.

I get that I need to forget.  I get that life is a balance of good and bad, happy and sad and all those cliches.

I get that.

But this insidious little thought runs through my brain… worming itself through my consciousness… colouring the joy with sorrow.

And then, as soon as I’m aware… the guilt that I’m enjoying myself when he’s not here… that I’m doing soemthing I would have done with him before…  and I have to almost physically pull myself back to enjoying whatever is going on.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

It’s not always… just enough to tug at my heart and make me catch my breath.

Just enough to keep me off balance…

Living In My Heart

Merry Merry Christmas

There’s a part of me that’s dying inside.  Christmas is hard without Mark.

Over the last 6 months, I’ve gotten VERY good about disassociating.  I’ve gotten VERY good at not seeing things.   It makes it easy to keep going.   If I allow myself to truly see, to truly feel what’s going on… then I don’t know if I would be able to handle it.

It’s overwhelming.  It’s unbearable.  It’s beyond comprehension that tomorrow mark’s 6 months without him.

At the same time, there’s so much joy, so many awesome things to be experienced this season.

All my kids were in my house for Christmas Eve & Christmas morning.

We had family with us whom we haven’t seen for a while.

The boys got some REALLY cool stuff that has kept them active and occupied for the past while.

We’re going to play a game together in a little while.

Aside from a personal meltdown this morning, and a bit of crankiness because A: my period showed up in full force, and B: I needed time alone and wasn’t getting it, it’s been a pretty freaking good day.

I’m a little sad/lonely though.  Everyone is gone.  Kids are going to bed in a while – after the game – and I’ll be alone again.

So it’s a good/bad day.  I’m going to spend some time reflecting on my husband, our life together and doing some work to just let the memories wash over me… I’ve been having a hard time with crying… maybe because I have been surrounded by so many people and I *don’t* cry around others…

But I need to cry… not crying is coming out in other, less healthy ways…

So while it’s been a very sad, emotional, overwhelming Christmas… It’s also been fairly good… and wonderfully full of love and life.

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I have the best family… I love my kids so much.  I am blessed to have them.  I have to always remember that they make my life worth living.

Merry Christmas my Love…

I miss you.

I need you.

This all feels wrong without you.

Despite the children, the extended family, the chaos and the noise… I feels very much alone here.   I miss you.

If I close my eyes, I can almost feel you, your presence, you… it’s an odd thing to feel, the physicality of you.   If I close my eyes, and concentrate, the skin memory of you is there.  I can feel your touch, your hands in mine, the way your hair feels when I run my fingers through it.

I can feel your arms around me if I think about the hugs we used to share.  I can feel you.

I miss, most of all, the look on your face after I’ve kissed you.  I miss the way you would get lost in me, and me in you.   And the world would cease to exist for those moments.  I miss that perfect moment.

I miss you so much.

Merry Christmas my Love.