I Did Not Know
Reflections as I approach the 2nd anniversary of my wife’s death
I did not know that I needed to record her voice when I visited her on Christmas day in 2015 as that would be the last time I ever heard her speaking while she was alive. That I would be too sick to visit her again until after she had her first stroke, and that stroke would steal the words from her forever.
I did not know that the last time I visited her (on May 16, 2016) was going to be the last time and that she would pass away before I got back to the hospital the next day. That I missed my chance to say good bye and tell her one more time how much I loved her and did not deserve the many, many blessings she brought into my life.
I did not know how much her outgoing voice mail message would come to mean to me in the days after she passed away. That “This is Barbara. Leave me a message and I will call you back as soon as I can.” would both soothe me and bring me to tears.
I did not know that the friend-of-a-friend who came to help me with sorting things I had inherited from her would stay for many months and would become a good friend, or that this friend’s departure would cost me several other friendships that I had come to cherish.
I did not know that living alone with no regular job to go to and only my cats and her ghost to keep me company would be so depressing. Being a freelancer and a cat daddy are great, but still, I need to be around people who are in positive relationship with me more often (which is a big part of why I am looking for a job now).
I did not know that grief at her absence would transform into guilt over everything I did wrong while were together and everything I failed to do that I should have while she was here. That forgiving myself when it is too late to make amends will never feel right.
I did not know that survivor’s guilt would color my days in a sheen of rust and grayness. That it feels like a betrayal to her to accept the good things that have come to me since she passed away.
I did not know that it would seem impossible to foresee the consequences of most of my choices when I made them, but so easy to see them looking back.
I know these things now, for all the good they will do me.
Love and cherish the people in your life. If you find that you can not, look for better or different people. Life is too short to use the lessons that it takes so long to learn.
I love you.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Yes. I love to love, it feels so good. I feel fortunate to be able and sad for those who cannot accept the gift and so reject me as though it were my fault. I wonder if this is the reason I love to live alone. It allows me to love and to wallow in it. I know most cannot comprehend. I do not love the pain it brings when I want love from those who cannot.
LikeLiked by 1 person