Nobody Knows

7 years ago everyone knew me as MarkandJane.

They knew that Mark and Jane were an entity.  They knew Mark’s love of fishing, flyfishing especially. They knew that he had disabilities (although he was careful not to show anyone else how bad it could get).  They knew he adored his kids, and they knew that he was the primary parent in our household.

They knew he was well read, articulate although they might not have known he wasn’t formally educated.

They knew he liked to play World of Warcraft.  I was the only one who knew that he waited until he was alone to do so. He’d tuck me into bed, snuggle for a bit, then get up and go do his thing while I slept.

They knew he was passionate about the environment.  He was angry beyond belief when the train derailed and sanitized the Cheakamus River. And he was heartbroken over it.

They knew he was the go-to guy for all things fishing.

They knew he was an amazing cook who made incredible Bailey’s latte’s.

They knew he and I had an incredible connection, an incredible Love that spans time, distance and death.

And now… I am married to Ryan.  And no one I know up here knows anything about Mark.

How could they? I moved up here a year after he died. I knew no one up here when I moved.

NO ONE KNOWS.

So how the FUCK, if they don’t know… am I supposed to explain to them why I’m crying randomly? Why a stupid song will reduce me to rubble? Why I start leaking for seemingly no reason?

How am I supposed to explain to anyone who sees me in the middle of a grief storm how much it still hurts every. single. day. that he’s gone.

Widows always feel the need to explain… “I DO love my living husband… but…”

It’s horrible. Unless you’ve lived it, how do you explain to someone how much you miss the dead husband even as you’re snuggled up to the live one?

I don’t go looking for grief triggers – but lately they’re finding me. And the leaking has started again.  Randomly, without warning or control.

And at 6 1/2 years out… I look like a mentally and emotionally unstable person instead of a grieving widow.

Which really sucks.

I miss this look:

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I miss the love that shone out of his eyes whenever he looked at me. I see it in all the pictures.  Times I didn’t realize he was looking at me like that.

And so I grieve in this new world of “Mark who?” and hope that the people who catch me at it understand that I’m not emotionally unstable – I’m just missing him.

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The Month of Changes

So much has happened in the past 37 days.

It started with a bachelorette party. On my dead husband’s birthday. Weirdness and shit. But fun.  Glitter dicks everywhere. Drunk me danced the night away. Drunk me decided to walk home late in the night with one of my bridesmaids.  Drunk me had a good time.  Hungover me was not impressed with drunk me. It was a weird thing, celebrating my upcoming nuptuals with a new guy on my dead guy’s birthday. My daughter planned the day and it was fantastic.

Then the wedding.  What a glorious, fantastic day. It was amazing and magical and incredible. My Smith family showed up which made it so much better. I stood there at my reception, staring at what is now all 6 branches of my family. The Smiths, the Cavanaghs, the Teichmans, the Mortimers, the Leylands, and the Beech’s. As I said then… some people are blessed to find one great love in their life. I have been blessed to find two. Loving my Sexxy Chef does not mean my love for my dead guy has changed. The heart expands and grows to encompass more love. And I am blessed far more than I feel I deserve with all the love that surrounds me.

Fairy Tale Wedding
Photo credit Throughout Time Photography

Last night… my 3rd child graduated. Mark was watching, somewhere, I know. The tiny baby who was smaller than our cat at the time… is now a grown up adult. Graduated from high school.  Ready to start life as an adult. But in that face… I still see the tiny baby. I still see the tiny human who kept me up for an hour every hour. And I remember all the plans we had, the promises we made, the hopes and dreams we had for the future and our children and grandchildren…

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Andrew Grad 2018

My heart hurts for all that he’s missing. But my heart is full of love and life and laughter at the same time. It’s a strange dichotomy.

It is June 23. Typically the time between May 18 and June 26 is a slow progression of increasing stress and pain and fighting to convince my brain that suicide is not an option. With all that has happened it has kept me distracted from that. It’s amazing how much LIVING can keep me from wanting to die.

I still hurt though. I sat in my living room last night, fighting tears, fighting the pain of him not being here, not really succeeding but holding it together enough.

The excitement is all done.  The planning/preparation for the wedding is complete.  Graduation has passed. And I’m faced with 3 more days before his angelversary.

I’m left with my thoughts, my feelings, and the reality of somehow balancing my love and excitement of being married to my new husband with the abject, overwhelming pain of not having my dead husband here. I’m not sure how to balance that. Any suggestions would be fantastic.

On the drive up to decorate the hall for my wedding, my graduate asked me why we had a picture of Dad. I said it was to go on the display of people who we miss and wish were here.  He was like… …ok… and I laughed and said… of course if Dad was here, we wouldn’t be doing this.  He laughed as well…and we carried on.

Such is the strange dichotomy of a remarried widow, a new wife, who has been blessed with a man who loves her enough to accept all of her… the past, the present and the future.

I am blessed.

Holding Hands Ceremony
Photo credit Throughout Time Photography

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to the newest member of my family!!

My daughter gave birth to a beautiful little man on December 21. He is my second grandchild.

This is also my fourth Christmas without him.

It seems so unreal that he’s not here for his grandsons…

I don’t even know how to fathom that.  He wanted grandkids. I wanted more kids, he kept saying that we’d wait for grandkids.

He’d play Santa.

He’d play with them.

He wanted grandkids so very badly.   And he’s not here… Zeddicus Wellington

 

I’m told there will come a point where the pain, the stabbing reminders that he’s NOT HERE will eventually subside and be replaced with joyful memories and gratitude for a happy life shared.

I’d like that for Christmas this year please.

That’s all.  All I want is to smile because it happened, not cry because it’s over.

I want to remember him and honour him and be joyful in the life we shared… while I’m living an amazing life I’ve built.

It hurts… as much as I am joyful, as much as I am in love with my grandsons, it hurts that I can’t share them with him…

I am a Grandma without a Grandpa.

At some point, I’d really like to have my life be about all the things it IS, not what is NOT.

Peace

I am not at peace… not yet… not all the time…

But it is a happy beautiful Christmas this year.  I got a grandson. I got to be there for his birth.  I got to be with all of my children, and my children’s grandparents for “our” Christmas – which we did 2 days early – and I got to see my older grandson over Skype.  And I’ve found 2 dimes from him these last few days.  So I know he’s been around.

It is, it was a beautiful Christmas.

I still miss him.  I still miss our life. And I miss the Metalhead Poet.

But it is an amazing Christmas – even if it didn’t feel very Christmas-y.

I’m Lonely

I don’t know how to live alone.  I don’t know how to be alone in the evenings without another adult to keep me company.  I don’t know how to live alone without a small child or two or three to snuggle and read stories to and do puzzles with and do bedtime routines for.

I don’t know what to do when it’s just me.

Watch TV?  It’s boring.  We’re in midseason hiatus.

Watch movies?  I’ve seen most of the movies I want to in the free ones and the VOD costs.

Craft?   It’s lost a bit of it’s lustre… I don’t know who or what to craft for.

School work?  Yeah… that’s coming.  I can start on math… it’s self-paced.   Or I could read the books that I have and get a jump on what I’m supposed to be learning.

Coffee with friends?   Well… they’re all busy.  With lives. *sigh*

Cleaning?  I live in a tiny 3 bedroom basement suite.   Guess what?  It’s clean.  And fairly organized.  And the clutter is getting less and less because I just keep decluttering.

Work out?   Can’t do that all night.

I miss my husband. He was good company.   We would talk.  We would craft together.  We would play cards.  Play games.  DO stuff together.

I don’t know what to do with myself.

I’m bored.  I’m lonely.  And it leaves me restless, irritable and discontent.

Being a widow sucks.

There is so much I miss about him.   But his presence… that… I miss most of all.

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