Well I haven’t written in a month . . . and, I could say it’s because I’ve been busy (which we have) but honestly, it’s more of an avoidance of wanting to sit down and put on paper the plethora of thoughts in my head. The reason? It’s not clear and I detest looking like I don’t have life figured out. My thoughts and feelings are all over the board lately, and it is infuriating me!
This week was tough. It was the six month mark of your being gone. It made me really sad….really sad….and I think the fact that my kids were gone and Nancy was gone made it feel even more hollow. I thought about of the events, birthdays, etc that you’ve already missed. It then dawned on me that those are only the beginning of the long list of dates you’re not going to participate in. You know when you’re HEAD knows something, but you’re HEART won’t sync up with it? Yea, it’s kinda like that. I know you’re gone. I know death is final. I know this is our new normal. Yet, there are times I tell myself, this is just a test --- he’s going to walk through that door any moment! I’m not a stupid human ---- I think it’s a mind activity I subconsciously use to handle the hurt in bite size chunks. . . .how’s that for strategy?
The kids are having a tough time. ….. especially Caleb. There’s tears multiple times a week. Last night he reminded me about when he and his brother would spend the night at your house. Noah would wake Grama up, and they would go make eggs and sausage. He said, “And I’d go lay in bed with grampa and we’d snuggle until breakfast was ready. I miss that.” It broke my heart --- but I’m so thankful he remembers those times with you. Having kids that are going through grief really adds an additional element that frankly I’m not sure how to handle/answer. I oscillate on letting them just talk through it and not make a big production of it, or should I make them really sit and talk and think through it. I don’t know. I know it will be a permanent marker in their life --- the year their grandpa died --- but I want them to emerge on the other side too!
I’ve felt really guilty too. Because I’m mad --- and I’m really mad at you! I keep thinking why didn’t you do what the doctors said? Exercise more; follow that diet you were supposed to; quit bitching at those of us who told to do those things. In a perfect world, doing all of those things would have saved you. They would have given your four grandkids years upon years of memories. They would have given you and your wife the chance to live out your dream at the lake house. They would’ve, should’ve, could’ve . . . . the truth is, maybe it wouldn’t have changed anything. Maybe your heart would have still been too tired. Maybe the stroke would’ve happened anyway. That answer will never be known.
I think when a heart hurts, it’s natural to look for the alternative path that would have avoided that hurt . . . . I think I’ve been doing a lot of that lately, but I keep coming back to the same ending ---- if everything happens for a reason, then there’s a reason we’re at where we are today. You told me that a long long long time ago when I was on a self destructive path in my 20’s. You were right. If I hadn’t gone through those circumstances, hurt, fear, rebuilding, then I wouldn’t be married to Dennis and have the three kids I have today! And there is NO WHERE else I’d rather be than with them! However, it took many years to look back and realize how the shitty times eventually put me on the path to THIS life! So, I know, this is just another leg in that path --- I just wish I knew where it was going to lead. Maybe if I could see the mountaintop --- the valley wouldn’t be so hard to walk through. I love you. I miss you so!!!