…and that is perfectly okay.
I wanted to share with you all the ugly truth. As you might well imagine grieving sucks. Losing someone that you love is horrible. Losing the only person who was ever brave (or dumb 😜) enough to really take a chance on you…well, it feels insurmountable.
I have been doing everything in my power to avoid feeling the sadness and the pain of this loss. I’ve gotten so good at it that my mind immediately blocks out any negative thoughts or feelings that try to bubble up to the surface. I can feel them coming up and within seconds they just disappear.
And for the most part, I’ve been okay with that. It’s easier this way. If I don’t let the thoughts come in, I won’t feel the feelings. I can go about my life as though nothing has happened. I can wander through each day as if my entire world hasn’t been irrevocably changed.
I can do that. Until I can’t.
Just the other night as I was trying to go to sleep I had a gut wrenching thought pass through my mind. I thought, “How did I get here? How is this my life? What did I do to deserve this hell that has been thrust upon me?”
I can give you the answer I like the most: This phase of my life is the price that I (willingly) pay for having had the opportunity to love and to be loved.
Problem is, I don’t always believe that. I know that I didn’t do anything wrong and now I’m being punished. And I do (usually) sincerely believe that I crossed paths with Joshua to show him unconditional love. He taught me so many things. He made me feel useful and he gave me a purpose. Right or wrong, that’s the truth.
I have been having so much trouble with “finding my sadness” that I have taken it upon myself to search for it. I’ve been holding the key all along.
Everywhere I go, I bring my phone with me. I literally carry his face, his voice and his love with me everywhere. My sadness, my heart and my joy are always at my fingertips.
I have nine of the most crucial messages saved on my voicemail. They were all left while Joshua was in rehab. He was always so good at expressing his feelings when he wanted to and these messages are no exception. I sat down today and listened to a couple – they gave me everything that I needed. I have been needing so badly to have someone tell me that they love me and that I’m beautiful. Of course, not just anyone would be able to meet that need. Without fail, my love reminded me that those exact words are always waiting for me on my phone. The one that I listened to today told me how proud he was of me, how thankful he was for all that I was doing for him, that he has always loved me and that I was beautiful.
And that’s when I lost it.
I am not grieving “right” and I am not grieving “wrong” – I am simply trying not to grieve at all.
I am unbelievably sad. Somewhere, deep down, the hollow feeling in my stomach, the tightness in my heart, the fatigue in my eyes and the fog in my brain are waiting for me to invite them in. I know I need to feel this in order to feel anything again.
Loss is painful. It’s scary. It’s hard. And avoiding it is totally normal. But it will only last for so long.
I’ve rested long enough.
It’s time to take the next step.
I might change my mind tomorrow , but tonight I give myself permission to not be okay. After all, I just lost my husband. There is nothing okay about that.