You know I want to write more, right??? It’s just hard to get my thoughts to line up on the page. My thoughts want to criss-cross and tangle, stop and start, twist and turn until I have no idea where they are going when at one point I knew. I can’t figure it out. The one year mark for the flood has passed, one year for B’s death, one year since I moved back to my hometown, one year for my mom’s death, one year for the weekend of their services, so why aren’t things okay? Or maybe the question is why ARE things still okay?
I’ve had people tell me that things get a little easier after a year. Maybe they are, but I’m not sure about that. Everything certainly still weighs heavily on my mind. One thing that I didn’t know that I do now is that after the momentous year anniversary, you can’t say or think, “A year ago we were doing this or that,” anymore. I have no idea why, but NOT being able to do that really sucks! It makes it seem as if all of those things happened a long time ago, and that’s not how I feel. It was comforting to be able to think back to a year ago when they were still with me. There are a lot of really difficult parts to grief that I just didn’t realize.
You know the word “conundrum”? That word seems to fit. I appreciate the lessons that I learned during my “terrible, horrible, no good, very bad” year. I absolutely love the people I’ve encountered and learned from along the way. I wouldn’t trade many of my experiences. They’ve changed me, and although, I am more fragile and broken in some ways, I am stronger and better in others. I wish I still had a husband and a mom here with me because it’s never long enough, but I also am very grateful that I had them in my life at all.
I can’t imagine having to navigate this all alone. Despite feeling alone sometimes, I know how very, very lucky I am to have people around me who care how I am and how my dad is. There are lots of people who don’t have anyone to help or care, and I wish that I could fix that. I wish that I could fix so many things.
B had some heart issues during his cancer treatment, and I learned to listen to his heart and tell if it was out of rhythm or too fast or slow. I tried using a stethoscope or feeling his pulse with my fingers on his wrist, but I was much better at just listening with my ear. I would lie with my ear to his chest and listen. It was so comforting to me when it was okay. You know that beautiful song, “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart” (I like the BeeGees AND the Al Green versions, so I’m including links to both.) THAT is what I want to be able to fix. Not just mine, but my dad’s, and SO many others that I know (and those that I don’t). There are lots of things that comfort me, lots of things that make me smile, lots of things that are worth appreciating and living for, but so far I haven’t found the broken heart fix. I want to hear that strong and normal heart beat. I have faith that God will help me–that’s already been proven time and time again. It’s just hard not knowing how to wade through it sometimes. It seems like too much. It’s lonely not being able to listen to his heartbeat even if it was out of rhythm.
It seems like there should be some sort of road map, but there isn’t. I realize that the holidays are difficult for many people, and I’m no different. Memories are inevitable during this time for us all. The only thing I’ve figured out is to try to keep moving forward, keep making new memories with the ones I love, and keep busy. This busyness often makes me tired and causes me to be forgetful because I have a lot going on in every direction, but it seems better than the alternative. I LIKE all the things that I’m doing; my heart just still hasn’t figured out that they are the “right” things. I realize that this will continue to be a struggle because broken hearts aren’t an easy fix. Take the time to love “your” people every single day (plus maybe a few extra that don’t have anyone).