Thursday, December 16, 2010

I Thought...I Wish.

Deep In Thought


Another busy day at work. By the end of the day I was the only one left in the office. Most had left for the day, and many had left for time off for the holidays. Man, do I wish I could take time off right now. Being new, and with little to no vacation time earned, I will be working straight through the holidays. And judging by the stack of boxes that border each room in my new home, I haven't made much progress in the unpacking department.

I left the quiet office, and walked out into the cold night. Mine was one of the few cars still left in the lot. How symbolic for me. All alone in the dark cold night. As usual, I got into my car, took a deep breath, and let the tears flow. This time I cried more than usual. It's the holiday season, and most people are filled with joy. I wish I could be joyous. I sat there in the car, sobbing, and feeling angry and resentful once again. Why did I only get three and a half years with my husband? Why do others get what seems like an eternity? Why do I return home every night alone? Well, the kids are there, but you know what I mean.

I feel so cheated. I feel so let down by life. I feel so let down by God. I'm trying to psyche myself up for an early Christmas celebration with my extended family on Saturday. We will be gathering at my parents home that day since each of my brothers and their wives will spend Christmas in their own homes. They will experience the joy of waking up next to the person they love, and exchange gifts, and cuddle next to the fire. I on the other hand, will be sitting here desperately clutching my laptop, which is my only extension to what feels like real life.

What hurts the most is that it doesn't feel like my family understands how hard this still is for me. They love me, and are good to me, but I don't think they get how hard it is to hear so much laughter and joy. They don't see how it rips my heart apart just being around them, and seeing how happy they are. When I am with them the conversation often turns to issues of being a couple, and the jokes fly about things they say and do with their spouses. I'm a good brother, and I just smile, or try to discretely separate myself from the situation.

I know there is nothing anyone can do to change what life has dealt me. I get it. I know that I have to learn to move forward, and I am. It just hurts like hell, and in times like these, the holidays, I do find myself thinking about how different we thought life would be. Michael and I had it all planned out. We talked about the house we would buy together. We talked about working on that house together. We talked about growing old together. We pictured ourselves, two old men, sitting on the porch, resting with a cold beverage after working all afternoon in the yard. I thought about how lovely life would be, always sleeping next to that person who loves me, and who I love with all my heart.

I thought about becoming grandparents together. I thought about all the travel we would do. I thought about all the passionate nights of sex we would have, even through our "golden years." I thought about all the ornaments we would collect over the years, and how much fun we would have reminiscing while decorating the tree each year. I thought about all the traditions we would create together. I thought about how we would use our wedding china for every special dinner. I thought about how happy we would be.

As I may have mentioned in the past, I rarely dream. In fact, I have only seen Michael in my dreams on two occasions since he died, and both times were about his final days. I tell myself that I don't allow myself to dream so that it won't hold me back, yet I now find myself wishing I could. I wish I could have this fantasy life in my dream world. I wish I could be visited by Michael, or that I could go visit him where ever he may be. I wish I could feel his embrace, or to see his smile once again. When I can't sleep at night I talk to him. I ask him to come back to me, if only for a minute. I tell him I won't be afraid, and I won't even tell a soul that he was here. Yet, nothing.

It's no good, none of this is helping me. Even as I write this I am telling myself that these things are not good for me. I tell myself that if I really thought it would help me, that I would be dreaming about him. I hate that about myself. I know what's good for me, so I don't allow myself to be self indulgent. Well, maybe just a little.

If you are still reading, then bless you. I don't know if I could stick with this if these thoughts were not pouring out of my own head. I hate whining. But as my kids say, don't be a hater!

Okay, I feel better now. I just needed to get this all out.

I'll be fine.



  1. I don't think that's whining. I think that is accurately stating the reality of your life. I think "prettying" it up is a lie. These days, I feel like I can either tell people the truth of how it is to be me, I can lie and say I'm fine, or I can just not say anything. Mostly, I choose the latter. I also feel that the big Year Two difference for me is that now I am more cognizant of the reality of living here. Know what I mean? Like - oh. Actually every day I have to get up and be here, even though matt drowned and life stopped, and I have to still be here. Every day until I'm not. Sh+t. And, I'm not even the happily unpartnered person I used to be, before he and I met - perfectly cool in the world on my own. 4 1/2 years for us, with a kid turning 18 and leaving home. Whole life unfolding, next adventure, all that.

    So - you are not whining. You are venting and speaking reality to those of us who understand.

  2. Truth telling/venting is so good for our souls. That's what we're here for. Hugs!!!!!

  3. Of course we would keep reading: it is our reality too. It feels good to hear someone else say it, especially after walking through a life full of people who think we should be better (even if they are not saying so at that moment). The every-damn-dayness of it is so exhausting. I guess that is what they all mean about 2nd year syndrome, which it sounds like many of us are in the thick of. And exactly, Megan, that is my reality too: I was fine before him. But I am not fine after him. And bang up against that every single day. Love you all. Carolyn (seventeen months today)

  4. You remind me of where I was last year at this time. I am one year further along in the journey. Things do get better.... I never stop missing him, wishing things were different, or thinking about things that we would be enjoying together. It's just that it is not always so intense. Sometimes it is, but I know it will not last as long. I don't know if that helps. I know for me without hope for tomorrow it becomes very difficult to function. Wishing you peace and hope. Sandy/Ct.

  5. I can't bear to look in other people's windows when I walk or drive past. Because I see the Xmas decorations and imagine their perfect lives ... like everyone else is living a commercial really. The weird thing is that I know that this is not really reality. It just feels that way ... damn I miss him.

    Just know that we know how you feel and that I love you xx

  6. I remember being at a birthday party for a friend's daughter toward the end of my second year. Most of the people had grown up together and all were couples but me. It was near Valentine's Day and they started talking about some game one couple was to participate in where you compete to see which couple knows each other the best. The entire conversation centered around this for a good 45 minutes and I was stuck. I was incredibly uncomfortable with the conversation and yet I knew that if I started to offer ways that my wife and I would have answered the various questions then THEY would become uncomfortable. So I just sat there until my daughter came in from playing and we could safely make our escape. It was miserable and I still dread birthday parties with that group of people.

    All of that to say that I feel for you Dan. In some ways it does get better, but the whole couple aspect (and for me the having more kids aspect) still stings. Hard. And often. Someday the holidays will become more joyful and less a time to get through, but until then all I can say is "Hang in there. We're all pulling for you".

  7. Not quite six months here....first xmas alone after 8 yr. I appreciate your candor and don't consider it to be whining. In fact, I am grateful to read everyone's posts about their experiences since I feel much the same.
    Wishing all much peace and comfort,

  8. Take my word for it; You are NOT whining. If anything, you're being 100% realistic with yourself and that's what matters the most.
    I'm doing everything I can to avoid visiting either family this year. Not only am I unable to tolerate the joys of the season within each others' circles, but I simply don't feel like I have one reason whatsoever to celebrate.
    You need to know how much you are NOT alone in your struggles. Jack (my much better half) loved this particular holiday because of how well the kids responded to his voice, which I can still hear quite clearly (and the ocean blue eyes, dark hair, Cherokee complexion, etc), and the thought of being around all of them without one peep from him is enough to break me down. I just can't deal with it yet.
    Hang in there, Dan. You're not alone. ♥

  9. Hi Dan,

    Just stopping by to wish you peace and hopefully some restful down time over the holidays.

    take care,