Thursday, November 03, 2011

an anniversary spent with no internet

Living with grief is a strange thing.
Years, made up of months of weeks of days of hours
spent keeping busy
doing the job
getting things done
making people proud
proving you can do it
even when the person you most want to make proud
the only person you ever needed to prove anything to
is gone.
Every other anniversary (and many other days)
has been filled with reliving every moment of that day
and the days leading up to that day
wondering pleading crying
but not truly functioning, whatever other people might be able to see.
This year was different
a day in the muddle of days
in a place with no internet and no clock
where time stands still…
a day spent reading mystery novels with women detectives, just like she did
a day spent cooking, in a pot that once was hers, just like she did
a day spent, for the first time in six years,
just resting.
It seems counterintuitive—
we’re told to keep busy to keep our mind on other things to distract ourselves and move on
but that may not actually work
I thought a retreat would mean thinking more, obsessing more, crying more
but instead it meant rest,
and some relief—
relief from trying to hold it together,
relief from hiding the sobs,
relief from doing everything the best to make her proud.
This year was different.
No relentless memories of the phone call,
No wondering if the day would ever end,
No what-ifs about how the world might have been different,
No sobbing until throwing up.
Just…reading. cooking. rest. Finally.
I still miss her.
I still want to pick up the phone and find her on the other end.
I still want to go on those adventures we’re (in)famous for.
But maybe a little rest from all of that
was what I really needed on this year’s anniversary.