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Matt and I were together for 10 wonderful years - met in 1998, married in 2002, until his untimely death on November 15, 2008. We have two beautiful, healthy children - Jacob (born 5/04) and Sydney (born 5/07)... the most precious gifts he could have ever given me.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Last night...

A little while after I tucked the kids in last night, I could hear Jacob blowing his nose a lot which probably meant that he was crying. I went up to check on him, and sure enough...

"I miss my daddy" was all he could get out between sobs. Like his sister, he's going through another stage, too. Oh hell - we all are, and apart from a few breaks here and there, I don't think it'll ever end.

"I want to move back to Buffalo" was the next thing he said. I didn't expect to hear this, but I can understand why. Even though we love being here, we're all experiencing isolation of sorts while we still try to establish friendships. I told him we're not moving again, but I asked him what else could help make this better for him. He said he wants to go back to visit every three months. I think that's a very resonable request, and one that we'll follow through with.

As much as I've been having my own frequent moments missing Matt more than usual lately, I thought I'd been doing a good job hiding it. It's so fucking hard to find a healthy balance of keeping Matt in our children's lives so they "know" their daddy and don't forget, versus reopening wounds for them. Am I hurting them more by trying to keep his memory alive? Am I hurting myself? I don't *think* I've been mentioning him too much. I don't want to forget, though, and I don't want them to forget him, either. Can one of my fellow widowed peeps give me some guidance with this? I'm not sure I'm doing the right things. We are hurting, but are we hurting more than we should be or is this normal for freaking four years out?

So when I went to bed last night, I was exhausted. I had worked out HARD for the first time in nine years, and I expected to have a good solid sleep that night. Not so much. I had a nightmare, which is a repeat from the ones I've been having the last four years - that Matt just died and I just recently found out or was being told for the first time. I stayed awake long enough that I hoped I wouldn't continue the dream, but when I went back to sleep, sure enough, but just a different version. Next time I woke up, I walked around a little before attempting sleep again. Didn't work. Nothing worked for however many times it happened last night (I lost count). All I know is I hardly slept and I haven't been able to shake the heaviness in my heart and I've been fighting back tears all day, like it hasn't been bad enough lately as it is. It just seemed to reopen the wounds, as it does every single time I have that nightmare.

The wounds have been so fresh today - more than usual. It takes the wind out of me. I'm starting to think I really am traumatized and irreparably broken.

I'd like to think I put on a good front and make everyone - especially my children - think that everything is fine and that I'm not as affected anymore. Have I been convincing to everyone? I can actually convince myself sometimes, too.


Crash Course Widow said...

Anna's always been a hard barometer compared to other half-orphaned kids, because she never really reacts. She had a phase of it when she was 4-4.5, but not much since then. Sometimes she talks about him a lot, but most of the time, she says little or nothing. Guess that's to be expected when he died before she was a year old.

I met you right at 4 years out for me. I was struggling with a lot of things at the time -- stress of working from home with Anna still there, the death of Charley's grandfather (and then our dog right after Camp) -- and it made the grief, and my bad dreams about Charley, pop up more. I wouldn't be surprised if the move triggers a lot of things again, whether consciously or unconsciously. And I always was in a foul mood around the death anniversary, and often the holidays, for the first 4-5 years.

I've always found it's a catch-22 with talking too much or too little about Charley with Anna. I don't think there's ever an easy answer, especially when you have 2 kids at different ages with different needs. But we muddle through it the best we can...and I doubt our kids will remember many of the specifics of what we said or did when they're older; they're still too young.

Much love to you, and thanks for the Christmas card!! DE, huh? =)


Zappa said...

I don't have any answers for you other than to say that what you and your children are feeling is what all of you need to feel. There is no right or wrong.

I am a stranger on the internet, but I think about you often and I am so glad that you decided to start writing again.

Merry Christmas!

Zappa said...

I don't have any answers for you other than to say that what you and your children are feeling is what all of you need to feel. There is no right or wrong.

I am a stranger on the internet, but I think about you often and I am so glad that you decided to start writing again.

Merry Christmas!

~Chelsea~ said...

If I knew the answer, believe me I would share with you . . .
As I told you a bit ago, Caia has hit a new period in her grief, where things that used to give her comfort are now more painful for her. I know I've mentioned him a bit less here and there because of it, but I've just tried to read her and see where I 'think' things may go with how I incorporate him in our day, because there are still plenty of times she talks about him in a happy, positive way too (and, like you, I think it's important). Even though she's been crying about him far more than ever, she still felt better having a family picture with him at school with her, and that has helped immensely with me dropping her off (she used to cry every day before I left - but I wouldn't go until she stopped...)

I'm a few months behind you, but yeah - sometimes it's still so raw for me - and this time of year doesn't help matters. The other day we had a super great "Chrismassy' day, a good day with lots of fun and spirit, then once I had the girls in bed and went into the shower, I thought how proud he'd be, and then BAM! I completely lost it.

It's a rough road, my friend. But, I'm here with you and, though I wish we lived close enough to go for coffee (or a beer!), and help each other out - for now I'll send 'virtual' hugs and empathy.

Love you,

Boo said...

Oh my sweet friend ... I wish we all lived closer to each other so we could pick up the phone and be a short drive away, no matter what the time of day or (esp) night.

To see your children grieve must be beyond heart-breaking ... I've had night terrors recently too ... must be the Christmas thing ... not sure.

Sending you so much love xxx

Andrea Row said...

I'm sorry it's been so long since I responded, but your replies have meant so much to me. Makes me feel I'm not alone with all this. XOXO