Monday, November 23, 2009

It's been 16 months since I've seen Mike. We could have done another deployment and had a month to be back together. Our lives were stuck in an interval of 15 months. That time frame, 15 months, haunted us. "It's not that long. Not when you have the rest of your life." We were so positive.

I miss having fun. I miss having fun with you, baby. I miss how happy we were, just always happy. Even when we were mad. I can distinctly remember being so angry (about nothing I'm sure) and suddenly begining to laugh. I'm so tired of plastering on this face. This face that I'm not even sure I'm very good at. No one is really fooled, it's just to hard to talk about. I'm tired of forcing myself to "get back to things" and not genuinely feeling like I want to be there. I don't know how you get that fun back. I don't know how to ever capture the amount of happiness we had together. I tell myself that there's some kind of crazy different happiness. I don't know if it's true.

I hate that time just keeps going. And I hate that I wake up everyday feeling this way. I am stuck right here. And if I knew what to do to make it better, or help make it easier to keep going, I'd do it.

I miss you so much. So much.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I've been reading this blog and too many times I've been nodding along or talking outloud in agreement with these posts. I'm going to link it here, incase you're interested. And I think the sidebar description of the nature of the posts on this blog is so accurate. It makes me smile.

Blog Message
Many of the posts you will find on this blog are painfully raw. Some of the writing here will be difficult to read. You may find yourself nodding your head in kinship or wiping away a tear as you read the stories that are posted here daily. Together we examine the good, the bad, and the ugly parts of life as a widowed person. The views expressed here are those held by each individual author. We take no credit for their brilliance, and we provide them with the freedom to express their widow journey in words that are uniquely their own.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My online friends

I am lucky to have so many people who have stepped up beside me to take on this journey in the last year. I have family, friends, Mike's friends and people I've never met express how much they care. That doesn't even feel like the most appropriate word but I'm not sure what is. Sometimes, however bogged down I get in what I'm missing, I forget how many people are constantly looking out for me. Among the amazing people I am fortunate to have, there is one specific group I want to thank and those are my MB ladies. Although I have drifted away in the last year I still feel completely at home as part of their family.

Right before Mike deployed I went online looking for things about weddings, and things about deployment, and things about the army, etc. I found a place where people chat about all of those things and more. Soon I was telling Mike what people would say about deployment, or about R&R and I was using abbreviations he had never told me about. He was so glad I had somewhere to belong while he was away. I was able to lurk when I wanted, post questions, complain and meet some really great women. A few days after Mike passed I texted one of these women with a text I don't even remember, briefly telling her what had happened. My phone immediately rang, with Dess on the other end in tears. I remember talking to her for a bit but I have no idea what I even said. A few days later when I was able to check the board, I was caught by surprise at the outpouring of support. I guess surprised isn't the right emotion. It's not surprising that people in the military world would feel a certain connection to what I've experienced. Literally, everyone reminded me that we were in their thoughts and prayers. I received a box full (FULL) of cards with letters and notes and all sorts of heartfelt words. Since then I have received so many things in the mail that truly made my heart happy. I apologize in advance if I forget to list everything I've received. Spa gift certificates, starbucks gift certificates, wine, tea, chocolate, flowers on our anniversary, books, a snuggie, hot chocolate & marshmallows, magazines, things for Lily, jewelry, makeup bags, purses, wallets, ideas of activities in my city, notebooks, candles and a quilt.

The point is I can't be more thankful for these amazing ladies and their constant encouragement. I want them to know that there are so many times I have truly felt happy because of their kindness. I would get home and see a package outside my door, open the box and been shocked at how generous and thoughtful the items were. So, thank you!

And thank you for everything you do as part of a military family. You're pretty amazing :)

Monday, November 9, 2009

re-posting this :)

From the AWP page on facebook. There are so many things I think about re-posting but this one I really enjoyed.

What We Want/What We Don't Want
By: Linda Della Donna

We want our husbands back.

We don't want your husband, your son, your father, your grandfather, or your cousin's next door neighbor's husband, her son, her father, or her grandfather.

If we ask the simple question, "how is he doing" That's all we mean.

We want our lives back.

We want what we can't have; can never have again.

We want you to understand that. And if you can't understand it, please learn to accept it.

We want to win at the game of life.

We hated losing everything.

We want the pain to go away.

We don't want to kill ourselves. Though we may say, I wish I were dead.

We don't want pity.

Yours or anyone else's.

It causes us to feel pathetic. So, please don't preach if you decide to stop and chat.

And if you see us on line in the Dunkin'™ Donuts, please don't point at us to your friend when we pass.

We hate it when conversations turn to whispers when we step one high-heeled toe into the party.

We don't want that.

We want an ear; a shoulder. Someone to listen to our terrible horrible ugly day. Think King Kong with Faye Raye.

We don't want to hear, "If there is anything I can do, call."

Be specific.

We want, "Can I drop off a chicken and potato dinner Tuesday night at six?"

We don't want to tell anyone we are afraid, though we are scared to our core.

We are afraid to reach out, we are afraid to ask favors. We are afraid we can't pay back.

We want others to know that we are concerned about the future -- Ours.

We don't want to be alone.

We do want to be alone.

We don't want to answer the door, the telephone, or the sea of sympathy cards mountain-piled on the kitchen table. They act as reminders of death. Even emails can be overwhelming to us. When someone is dead, they do not return. It takes time to process that.

We want space.

We know you are there for us.

We don't want space.

We don't know you are there for us.

We will reach out when we are able.

We want others to do the same.

We want others to know we know you care. Be patient.

We want others to know, we don't know you care. Be persistent.

We want to measure time the way we once did.

Not BD (Before His Death), or AD (After His Death).

We want others to know that for widows, time has changed.

And we must process that.

We don't want to hear, "I know how you feel."

You don't. We pray you never will.

We don't want to hear, "I know what you need.

Even if you are an authority, it's not up to you.

We don't want to hear, "You'll be okay."

Especially when we feel nothing will ever ever be okay, ever again.

We don't want to be judged for something we did, something we said; something we didn't do, something we didn't say.

We are human beings and now we are alone and we are vulnerable.

Under the circumstances, we want others to know we are doing the best we can.

We don't want to hear (not at this time, anyway) about a visit to a hospital to visit a best friend's cousin's dying milkman.

Please spare us the details.

We want to know that someone in the world is mending, healing, getting better, and soon, very very soon, will be leaving the hospital on his own two feet.

We don't want to know about a stranger's funeral.

Chances are, we already know. We just don't care. At this time.

We want never to forget Him.

He was everything. He loved us back.

We want to cherish His memory.

Please don't feel uncomfortable if we mention His name.

We want others to know, though life has kicked us where it hurts, we still find joy.

We want to go on living, to laugh out loud, to live and love.

We want the world to know, we dare to dream.


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Everything is so different

It's just become the proof to me that you can't keep change from happening. Trust me, I've tried. There are things I've tried to freeze in time because Mike was the last one to do them, or touch them, or see them that way. That's the way it was when he was here. And slowly, as I have a good day and remember he would be behind me 100%, I change something. Or grab the courage to do something differently. And now when I think about it, so much is different. There are so many things I have to tell him. I used to make videos when he was deployed to "show" him stuff I did around here. Some of them are so ridiculous- there is literally one of me opening the mail and showing him each letter. There is one of me making dinner, one with a green face mask and one of me practicing all the stuff I had studied about Allegra-D. I was thinking about these videos and I start to think of all the ones that there would have been.

I'm so tired of doing the things that I do as part of my routine. I'm tired of sleeping with the bathroom light on. I'm tired of freaking out when I wake up in the middle of the night and then doing my mental check of "Bob, check. JR, check. Picture, check. Sweatpants, check... go back to sleep, Stacey." (Bob and JR are my bears). I'm tired of pulling in the garage and seeing that big green box that I can't bear to open or move. I'm tired of looking in the bathroom mirror after I shower and reminding myself not to wipe it. Those wipe marks are from him. I want to throw the bottle of empty mouth wash into the trash because it's huge and empty and it drains me to look at it. I feel like every picture up in our house is new and I've developed and framed all our memories. Our whole dinning room feels different because of that damn flag. I think about all the plants, and the crap I've bought, and my dog and I realize how different everything is. Different from what he would have known, different from what he would have seen, different from what we would have thought.

And that's just me. Me and him. Outside of me, so much has changed. Marriage, engagement, babies, houses, dogs, fights, changes in relationships, and election, changes in the world, changes in the economy, changes in jobs. And it's only been a year. I just wasn't aware before that you could be so removed, but you can't stop it. It breaks my heart that he hasn't been here to enjoy all of these changes but I do know he has his own way of "being here" for everyone now.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Follow Up: Character

This quote reminded me of Mike and what I often think about when I think about making him proud.

"A good character is the best tombstone. Those who loved you, and were helped by you, will remember you when forget-me-nots are withered. Carve your name on hearts, and not on marble." -Charles Spurgeon

Monday, November 2, 2009

Today I felt him with me, I think. I am the kind that wants "knock me over the head" signs and I question it everytime I think that it's anything other than that. Today, as I was trying to focus on work, I swear to you I smelled him. I was driving in the Jeep and it was only for approximately 2 seconds, if that. I slammed on the break. Damn you that's a good one, talk about stop me in my tracks...

Also, you may want to see Lily in her rooster costume. The things I do to amuse myself!