As I sit and think about this past year I am amazed that time has passed so quickly and yet at the same time seemed to have stood still.
I returned to work at the end of Christmas break, a few weeks after Gee's death. It was looked at as being strong and carrying on. What it was was fear. Fear of being alone all day with my tears. Once Rachel went back to school and it was just me, Fred and the cat I really was hit with the fact that Gee really was gone. The thought of having to go on without him just terrified me.
I feel so much guilt. The morning he passed I was so relieved for him, his pain was over and he was released from the body that had failed him. Always so strong never giving in to anything. He would never have wanted his children to see him so vulnerable during the last months of his life. Never mind helping with his care. Having Rachel help me move him, wash him, was not the memory he wanted her to carry with her. He wanted them to remember him as the larger than life man he always was.
I still wonder what he thought that last time he looked at me. While I stroked his hair, he opened his eyes, looking right at me and was gone. Taking my soul with him. I still feel empty inside. I can see those eyes looking at me, trying so say something. Maybe he was just saying goodbye.
It was weeks before I didn't wake up at night thinking I heard him calling for me. If I looked towards the couch I saw Gee lying in the hospital bed. I still have piles of stuff that I don't know what to do with. I have old work boots and raggy old coats I can't bring myself to throw away, still hanging where Gee left them. I haven't even looked into the back sheds, let alone cleaning the basement. Instead I just leave everything saying I'll get to that later...
I don't know what I thought would happen when he finally left me. I have gotten used to living alone. Well alone with the animals. What would I do without the animals. Fred is my constant companion. He follows me wherever I go. Even the cat has become more friendly, sitting on my lap for a few minutes at a time. What I haven't gotten used to him not being here.
I miss Gee so very much, everyday seems a chore to just get up. I put one foot in front of the other....the only way I can keep going. If not for the dog and cat I wouldn't get up in the morning. My friend Lynda worries about me, always coming up with ways to get me out of the house. She knows left to my own devices I would never venture out but to go to work.
I don't know what I had expected to happen over the past year. I have days when I talk of Gee with such joy and others where I can't even say his name out loud, if I did the tears wouldn't stop. I wonder if everyone feels like this, it can't be only me. Others have lost people they loved as much as I did Gee. I can't bring myself to ask them. It would be intruding on their grief or is it that it would expose my own.