Thursday, April 18, 2019

delete




woke up this morning to see a blue light flashing on my phone. a blue light means i have a missed call. is it another reach out from the great beyond? turns out a blue light also means another creepy guy from Instagram, whose feed consists of shirtless pictures of a highly muscled guy who is almost certainly not him, wants to send me a direct message. delete. sigh.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

the call

So something a little weird happened this morning...well, really last night.

I got up this morning checked my phone and there was notice of a missed call...from Mr. T!


You can only imagine how stunned I was to see that. It actually took my breath away for a moment.

How?

I now use his old phone number and the call came from that number so essentially my phone called itself. 

I've never actually seen something like that happen. My only explanation is that it's a junk call that spoofed the number. But how weird.

I posted the picture on Facebook, because I pretty much tell my friends everything these days because I have no one at home to talk to, and the general consensus is that it's Mr. T sending me a sign.

Yeah, I had thought about that too and you don't know how much I would like to believe that. But, at the same time, I don't want to let myself believe it because it would hurt too much to eventually find out there's a much more prosaic explanation.

But there's a part of me that will always want to believe it really was a sign from him. If anybody could find a way to get around the rules of Heaven and send me a sign - it would be Mr. T!

Sunday, April 14, 2019

truth



Since I really don't think anybody is reading this damn blog, I'm going to be very honest right now.

I want to die.

Now don't worry and there's no need to call emergency services to intervene and perform a wellness check. I am NOT about to harm myself, that's never going to be a problem.

But the honest truth is that I really don't want to be here. The idea of years and years of this just makes me want to...heck, I don't even know what it makes me want to do. It makes me want to cease to exist, I guess.

In a way, I feel like I've already ceased to exist. I feel useless, like an invisible nobody. I feel like I have no purpose, just someone taking up space, wasting oxygen.

I was watching a movie this weekend and one of the main characters made a vision board to see what she really wanted out of life. It made me realize that, for the first time in my life, I have no clue what I want out of the future. I have no plans, no hopes, no dreams, no projects, no little obsessions. 

I guess I'm fully entering the depression phase of grieving and it really sucks.

I do realize that I didn't have the best of weekends so that might be adding to this feeling but it's not the first time I've felt this way. I've been feeling this way for the past 5 months (yes it's been 5 months) and I've tried to distract myself with weekend plans and mostly it's worked. When I'm out doing something, either by myself or with friends, I don't feel hopeless about the future. I don't feel anything about the future, I'm just living in the moment. But when I'm at home, the moment is sad and kinda boring so living in it isn't a help. But I don't think constant distraction is healthy either. Oh bother.

Of course, I know I could distract myself at home by cleaning up rooms, going through and throwing things out, in general getting ready for whatever is to come regarding the house. But doing that just makes me very, very sad so I don't think that's a good idea right now. I've decided not to worry about all that stuff until after Mr. T's birthday next month.

And yes, getting through his birthday next month is going to be hard. He never made a big deal about birthdays but I always did. I practically made May 19th a national holiday. I can't decide whether I should distract myself that whole weekend or just crawl into bed with the covers over my head until it's over.

Until then, here I am wanting to die. It's not like I don't have friends and I know they care about me but it's just not the same as having that one person that you have an eternal connection with. I have friends who have been single their whole lives and maybe they'd roll their eyes at me because they don't have that one person either but I can't help but feel that it's different never having that connection versus having had that connection for decades and then suddenly it's all over without warning.

Hopefully I'll look back at this blog months/years from now and think I'm being overdramatic right now. Who knows. I'm too emotionally hollow to even care.

It's not like I'm morose every moment of the day. At least once a day my niece (who is like a little sister to me) and I exchange snapchat photos to make each other laugh. I'll share one with you.

Saturday, April 13, 2019

i'm no inspiration

"Part of the challenge of living according to other people’s expectations is that they are subject to change without notice. I was too sad for some people; I was not sad enough for other people. Somebody could catch you on a day when you are truly struggling, and they really don’t want to see that. They want to be able to give the world the report that, “She’s doing great. Wow. What an inspiration.”

Today is a bad day. I guess I'm too sad for at least one person. My mother, who has never been a very supportive person in my whole life, told me that it was time for me to move on with my life and to stop being sad. This was right after I told her that, because of Charlie's presence with me at work all week, I had been able to drive to work without crying for the first time in 5 months.

 It made me mad when she said it but after getting home and thinking about it, I can't stop crying. I guess all that crying I didn't do this past week has built up and has to come out somehow.

I don't want to be an inspiration to anyone either. I think I put on a good front when I'm in public but I know how well, or not well, I'm handling all this. I've noticed I'm taking more naps. I get home from work or from going out with friends and it's like I've used up all the energy that I have.

Of course the nap thing could also be because I have to keep the temperature in my house so high because I can't afford air conditioning. LOL It's been really hot here in Florida. I hate to think of the summer weather coming back so soon.

I miss the way I used to feel. I don't know how to get back to that girl and I know that I just have to walk my way through this, that there are no shortcuts but, oh how I wish there were.

And just because I hate ending things on a down note, here is a picture of how I looked taking Charlie out at 6 this morning. I put my shoes on in the dark because I didn't want to wake up too much so that I could go back to sleep. I laughed when I looked down at my feet under the streetlight. Luckily nobody else was stupid enough to be out at that hour.



 

erasing a life


I think one of the hardest parts about all this widowhood stuff is doing things I never would have to do if Mr. T were still alive.

Like, one of the first things I had to do was take care of his LinkedIn account. Normally I wouldn't have to do anything with that but he had a premium account which meant we were paying $69 a month for it. His company was reimbursing him for that but once he was gone, the reimbursements stopped and I certainly could no longer afford it so I had to contact LinkedIn. They ended up fixing the problem by deleting his entire LinkedIn account which wasn't what I wanted (I kind of liked looking at it) and something inside me screamed when I realized what they'd done but, I had to tell myself it wasn't hurting him, he really no longer needed it. But I HATE the fact that it (and he) no longer exists on LinkedIn.

And that realization just about tore me up inside.

There's all the big things you have to do - remove his name from financial accounts, from joint property in case you need to sell, even something as silly as Disney passes so you don't have to keep paying for the pass that will never be used again.

Then there are the silly, little things that no one ever thinks about. Somehow I think these are the worst.

Such as, I've promised myself that this is the weekend I'll clean out the refrigerator and freezer of all the foods that haven't been touched since November since they were ones that only he liked. But I hate even the idea of that because it means he's really never coming back. Of course my head knows this but my heart is being quite stubborn.


Or here is a silly one. See that broken bread tie up there? Mr. T put that on the cord of our toaster because the toaster and toaster oven sit next to each other and we were forever plugging in the wrong one. So he put a bread tie on the toaster cord so that we could easily identify it. It broke a few weeks ago and I actually cried . 


I put another bread tie on the cord so his idea lives on but the one he actually put on himself is gone...well, not completely gone, I can't bring myself to throw it out and hellfire will rain down on the head of anybody who accidentally does it while they are visiting me. 

I know there are much bigger "erasings" coming up. I haven't moved his shoes from the front hall and all of his clothes are still in the closet (and scattered on his side of the bedroom as he left them) and eventually I will need to go through all of them and give some away and box the rest up. I won't be able to bring myself to throw any of them away. But I just can't face that right now because that would be the ultimate erasure. To face that empty closet every day would just kill me. It would mean that he's really gone, that he doesn't need any of those clothes any more because he's not coming back.

I know he's not coming back but I don't *know* it, know what I mean? I don't want to know it.

How can someone be here every day for 55 years and then - poof - it's like they never existed? It just isn't fair.

I hate all of this but I hate creating a life without him in it the most.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

weird



I am a bit weird.

  That's not quite accurate, I'm a lot weird. I prefer the word eccentric but most people would say weird. I'm ok with that.

I'm not really interested in the things that most normal people are interested in.

I tend to get obsessions about odd things and then I research them and dwell on them, immerse and surround myself with them. Such as, at any given time when I lived in Virginia I was obsessed with either the Victorian era or the American Colonial period. Poor Mr. T. I completely decorated our living room in the Victorian style even though I know he really didn't like it. Of course we never really used our living room so that might have been why he put up with it. He was a smart one.

And I can't even count how many times I dragged him down to Colonial Williamsburg and insisted that we stay in the restored section even though those rooms weren't up to the luxurious standards that he usually enjoyed when traveling.

But, bless his heart, he not only tolerated my quirks (now that's a much nicer word than weird) but he celebrated them. I think he thought all my little passions and collections were adorable even though he could rarely keep up with them because I tend to switch from obsession to obsession with the speed of a cheetah. Ah yes, I used to have a thing for cheetahs.

Then there was the time I loved seals and sea lions, and the time I thought I wanted to learn the autoharp, or how about when I wanted to collect all things Little House on the Prairie and dragged him all around the Midwest visiting museums. Of course we did get to see Mt. Rushmore and the Badlands of South Dakota so I know he enjoyed that part. Or the time when I was obsessed with the American Southwest and decorated the whole house in that style...that came before the Victorian redecoration. Or the time when I fell in love with anything vintage - clothing, makeup, music and we had to go to all sorts of vintage festivals and antique malls. Mr. T wasn't fond of antiques, he liked new, modern stuff but he learned to appreciate my aesthetic. 



There was also my complete obsession with a house builder from the 1920s in Carmel so we went all around the town having him take pictures of all the houses and I spent hours in the library reading microfilms of 1920s newspaper or the lengths I went to to learn everything I could about the WASPs from WWII. Mr. T was supposed to take me to Texas this summer so that I could do more research about them. Anybody out there fancy a road trip to the middle of nowhere Texas?


And the poor guy never knew what color or length my hair would be when he came home. I experimented with my hair for years before finally settling on a style that suited me. In the beginning he might have had a confused look on his face when suddenly my long hair was short or my blonde hair was red but eventually he got used to it and nothing could phase him.

   My longest lasting obsession has been with hats. I love hats and wear them often. Mr. T loved this obsession, he often said I had a "hat head" which meant he thought I looked good in most any hat.



He loved for me to get new hats. On our last trip to California he insisted that I buy 2 new hats at my favorite hat shop in Carmel. It would make him happy to know that I wear one of them often and the other, bought for a vow renewal we never got to have, will make its first appearance at Disney Dapper Days later this month.

I'm also weird because, unlike most girls, I don't give a crap about wearing the latest styles or buying expensive purses and shoes. Actually, Mr. T loved me to have designer purses and the only ones I have are ones he insisted on buying for me. But nobody can make me spend hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on shoes.



Instead, and this is what makes me definitely weird, I have fallen in love with a style called Boho which is part vintage, part hippie with a dash of cowgirl thrown in for spice. I started dressing this way in 2012 and it was like a light bulb went off in my head. This is me, this is who I am. Mr. T used to call it my hobo style just to tease me but I think he really respected that I marched to my own drum when it came to style even though it wasn't his favorite style. Although I'm not interested in current designer fashion, I am very interested in fashion and style and I spend an inordinate amount of time putting together just the right looks. Mr. T appreciated that I cared about how I looked and the style I presented to the world. He loved to pick things out for me that contributed to that style. He had great taste in clothes and jewelry.

I so appreciate that he loved my weirdness and never judged. I was lucky and blessed to have someone by my side that allowed me to blossom into the real me. Before him, I had never met anyone that made me feel so comfortable to just be myself and let my freak flag fly. He encouraged every research subject, complimented every new hairstyle or outfit, made me feel like I was the cutest, most adorable girl on the planet and he listened to my endless chatter on subjects he probably couldn't have cared less about. For a mostly quiet girl, I can get on quite a roll if I'm talking about something I love. Being a passionate person himself, he understood and encouraged passion in others.

When I get to see him in heaven, the first thing I will do is thank him for giving me the space and confidence and support to become my true self, for loving whatever version of me that I came up with each day. It was the best gift a slightly (very) awkward, shy girl could have ever been given.

And so, for him, I'm going to keep on being adorable and cute and quirky and just plain weird.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

thinking about it


First of all - Charlie update!

She's doing really well. Her energy is up, she's not hyper/anxious anymore, she's my feisty girl again. Her back legs are much better, not completely strong but so much better than it was over the weekend.


 For the last 2 days I've taken Charlie to work with me to keep an eye on her in case the seizures come back. Well, at least that's the excuse I use. Truthfully I have her with me because I can't stand to have her out of my sight and I'm getting more out of it than she is. I love having her there, it makes me calm. And, I've now driven to work 2 days in a row without crying - that's a record! It's a long drive which leaves a lot of time to think.

Which brings me to what I've been thinking about lately - 

sex

Bet that got your attention. ;-)

Did it make you uncomfortable? It sure makes me uncomfortable and yet it's something I need to talk about. It's a big topic in my widow groups. I think a lot of people think grief is so big that it crowds out normal human emotions. Just the opposite, I think, it intensifies all emotions - the good, bad and the lustful. You miss everything about your old life especially the physical intimacy. 

I think, going through all of the trauma of Charlie's health crisis has brought some of that up for me. It felt awful to be alone during all that, which made me miss the emotional intimacy of sharing the good and the bad with someone and then that leads to thinking about physical intimacy. Don't moments of crisis make you long to really connect with someone? It's like, if everything else is going wrong at least that one thing is going right.

Not that anything is going to change in that department for me. I certainly don't have the emotional strength for a relationship at this point. I can't even imagine having the strength for a new friendship, I'm not able to give even that to anyone right now. As one of the widows I read about said "I want someone to kill spiders in my house and I want intimacy but I want you to want nothing of me. I want you to love me while I give you nothing."

I suppose for some people the alternative would be a one night stand. Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's not for me, I'm blushing even as I write this. Let's face it, I was a good girl before I met Mr. T. I mean, I was a VERY good girl. As much as I sometimes, over the years, regretted that I wasn't more experimental before I got married, I very much suspect that deep down I'm still a VERY good girl and nothing is going to change that. In this brave new world of sexting and booty calls, I'm a dinosaur...a VERY good dinosaur.

So all of that leaves me pretty much screwed (or actually not screwed LOL) so I guess I'm doomed to just be "thinking about it" for the rest of my life.