Iconoclastic Fury

November 24, 2012

Old Friends

Filed under: grief,marriage — by telechick @ 5:29 pm

I’ve been having a bit of a rough time for the past few days. Thanksgiving wasn’t too bad in and of itself.  My mother and I ate lunch with my grandmother (aged 94) and two of her friends (aged 98 and 102).  My mother was the only non-widow at the table. We never really had a big celebration and we never had dinner at our house, so I was spared that emotional minefield – only to be hit by a different one driving to my mother’s.

On the radio I heard the Simon and Garfunkel song “Old Friends” on the radio the other day and there’s the line in it – “how terribly strange to be 70” which got me to thinking that when I’m 70, C will have been dead nearly 30 years.  If I live as long as my grandmother he will have been dead 50+ years.   Even by the time I’m 50 he will have been dead longer than I knew him.  That’s pretty much unfathomable to me. How can I go on for 50 years or even 3 or 15 without him?  I know I will, because I don’t really have a choice, but it makes the future seem so very long and so very lonely.

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October 20, 2012

10/8/68

Filed under: dreams unrealized,grief — by telechick @ 6:40 pm

I had meant to write this before C’s bday, but never quite got it out.
For those who have cared for a loved one with a serious illness, there is no way you can forget that person’s birthdate. I can’t even begin to tally how many times I had to give his name and birthdate to the endless stream of nurses, doctors, PA’s, LPNs, dieticians, respiratory therapists, priests/rabbis, physical therapists, transport staff, IR staff, social workers, secretaries, and likely even some cleaning staff, with whom we interacted over 3 yrs. Sometimes C was awake and lucid and able to give the details himself, but often it was up to me to provide the relevant data. It got to the point that even now, 6 months after his death, when asked my birthdate I have to hesitate and make sure I’m giving mine and not his. There is no way I will ever forget that date and there is no way that an October 8th will ever pass without me wishing that he were with me in the flesh.

It was a priviledge to be with him during his illness and to see how his innate friendliness and genuine interest in other people never wavered even when he was feeling lousy or was having an unpleasant procedure. I still have a lot of guilt over what happened during his last week of life, but I hope that wherever he is now, C has forgiven me. I also hope that with time I can forgive myself.

C always promised me 50 years and we only got 8. That’s some pretty lousy math. However excrutiating the pain is right now (and it is excrutiating), I know that I wouldn’t trade those 8 yrs for the world, but I would trade the world for just 5 more minutes with him.

June 11, 2012

strawberry rhubarb sauce with a side of tears

Filed under: dreams unrealized,grief — by telechick @ 6:23 pm

So this evening I finally got around to turning the rhubarb I’d saved from our garden into strawberry rhubarb sauce, or glop as C and I used to call it.  This was one of C’s favourite things that I made and I spent most of my time crying into the pot. 

It seems like the past few days all I can think of is “The last time I did X or wore X or saw X or read X or thought X, C was alive.”  It’s been rough.  I moved the rest of my stuff down here on Saturday and I think it’s really beginning to hit me that this is it. This is all I’ve got for the foreseeable future.  No C, just a box with his ashes on my dresser next to my boys in their small boxes.  I am just so angry and so sad. 

He wasn’t supposed to die.  Someone made a big mistake at HUP and I and he will forever be paying the price.  It’s a beautiful early summer evening.  Today I found a red tailed hawk nest with two juveniles in a pine tree across the field from my house.  I took Ph on a lumber this am all around Chesterbrook and marvelled at the Stepford wives-esque perfectness of it all.  I ate some delicious strawberries. I had a glass of wine.  I spent way too much money on my pets at the pet store and much less money on me at Trader Joes.  None of this C will ever experience and none of this will I ever be able to share with him.  It is so f’ing unfair.

The other night while I was unpacking the truck with the help of my wonderful friends, a park visitor walked by and said how jealous he was that I got to live here in this amazing setting.  I totally agree with him that it is wonderful, but at the same time I wanted to say to him “Well, what allows me to live here is the fact that my husband died unexpectedly  6 weeks ago due to medical negligence and left me alone and a widow” and see what he thought then.  But I didn’t.

I’ve been reading through the Heartbreak Diary and she often suggests writing topics as a form of therapy.  The one I happened upon just now was to describe a place or thing that represents a hope that turned to nope with the death of your spouse.  She writes about a boat they bought.  The first thing that came to mind for me is a spot that I passed this morning on my lumber with Ph.  It’s where C and I first met that April 28th, 2004.  He thought I was so hot and I thought he was vaguely scary.  We were supposed to be together for 50 years.  That’s what C always promised me.  Instead, I got 8. The second thing that came to mind, is the house we were rennovating for C to move into when he got out of the hospital.  God I love that house. It was my dream house. We had so many plans and so many dreams for it and for us and now they’re all gone.  It sits, empty and half rennovated and it is so difficult for me to go back into.  We never even spent a night in there together or apart for that matter. It was always our dream, just out of reach and now I must try to get it finished enough to get rid of it. God that hurts.  I just don’t understand why.  You cannot convince me that there is some sort of merciful higher power out there who would let this happen.

May 28, 2012

what a difference 3 years makes

Filed under: grief,marriage — by telechick @ 5:12 pm
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The last time I posted was almost 3 years ago and how much has changed since then.  Then I was married to the most wonderful man in the world who was getting better after a near brush with death; I had two amazing dogs; I had plans to go to Corsica; I had a business and a life that I thought was amazing.  Fast forward to today and I am a widow of exactly 1 month; all of my boys are gone; I have an exactly 1 year old female puppy and two female cats; I am surrounded by boxes and chaos as I try to pack up what’s left of my old life and move it back down to VF.

My life is shattered. I don’t want to reinvent myself. I don’t want a new life. I want my old life. I want my C. I want to be the center of his world and the light of his life. I want to have new experiences with him. I want to travel with him. I want him to be happy and to be with me. I want him to snuggle with me and my puppy in bed. I want the love and the tenderness and the sex and the laughs and the annoyances and the quiet and the talking and the everthing. I want him to hold me. I want to smell his phermones. I want to get in the truck with him and just drive. I want to enjoy a drink on the deck in the evening. I want to ski all over the world with him. I want to move into our dream home together and to sit on our porch and to look at our yard with the fruit trees we were going to plant and the garden we were going to grow. I want OUR FUTURE. The one that will NEVER, EVER, EVER happen.

I didn’t deserve this. He didn’t deserve this. Everyone deserves more birthdays, right?

People tell me how lucky I am to have experienced such a deep and powerful love. It doesn’t feel lucky now. I think the saying about the fact that it’s better to have loved and lost than never to have loved is bullshit.

I will never consider suicide while my mother is alive, but I no longer care much how long I live. I don’t want to die in pain and terror, but other than that, it really doesn’t matter.  If I die and there’s no afterlife then at least I won’t be missing C any more. If I die and there is an afterlife and I get to be with him, then that is wonderful. It’s a win win either way. I guess I could say that one benefit to C’s death is that I no longer fear death.

We only had 8 years. We had no children. Everyone else I hear of who has lost a spouse either had many, many years with them or else had children to carry on some part of their lost loved one. I got screwed on both counts. I don’t think people really understand that and really understand what I’m feeling. I read that only 3% of the population is widowed in their 40s or younger. I wonder what the percentage is of people widowed in their 40s or younger without any children? 1%? 0.5%? Speaking of statistics, liver transplants have something like a 98% 1 year success rate. How could C, healthy and 43, fall into the 2%  – let me repeat, 2%, of those who don’t make it????

So in 1 month, exactly 3 years to the day I last posted, it will be as if the last 10 years never happened: I will be living alone in VF with my animals, working for the park. The only things that will be different are the animals, my weight (not for the better), the amount of gray in my hair, and the gaping hole in my heart that will never go away.

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