I ran across a blog post on Friday that seemed interestingly timed given that I’ve felt the same way many times before. A few days after the 6th anniversary of Jim’s death, it was as if I had stumbled across it for a reason. I’m not really sure what the reason is, but when I read it, I felt like I could have written it. The author is addressing the fact that it has been 32 months since she’s been part of a relationship and goes through the things that she hasn’t done/had since becoming a widow.
As is often the case, I succumbed to the one-upsmanship I sometimes use, either as a defense or as a way to keep what happened to me in the top position as the “worst possible thing, ever!” because that’s what I feel it is. “32 months?” my crazy brain said to itself, “try 72. When it’s been 72 months, THEN you can talk about missing all of those things. Because I was at 32 months 3 and a half years ago. It’s not all that bad for you now…let’s talk when you hit 72. IF you hit 72.” I realize that thinking is absolutely nuts. This is not a contest. But I think what got to me was the position of how horribly long that had been and oh poor thing would she ever be told she was beautiful or be held ever again. IT’S BEEN 32 MONTHS! IT HASN’T BEEN THAT LONG. 72 MONTHS?? THIS IS AN ETERNITY!!
The thing is, I’ve felt all of those same things she mentions.
“But even knowing this, I am still in that place mentally where I would rather remain in love with him, dead, than even consider or think about loving someone else, alive. Why do I feel like this? Is it because our love was so great and so special, that I fear it impossible to ever find such a thing again? Yes. Is it because I am terrified that I will never fall in love again, in that all-encompassing way, like I was in love with him? Yes. Is it because I am scared that I will fall in love again, and then he will die too? Yes. Is it because I am afraid that I will go searching for love again, and finally decide to open my heart, only to never ever find it, and have nobody ever love me again for the rest of my life?” – Kelley Lynne, on Widow’s Voice
And all of this just serves to make me think that I’m irreparably broken somehow. A big part of me would like to have the relationship things I used to have. But a bigger part of me doesn’t want anything to do with being vulnerable. Being part of a relationship opens up the possibility that one day that relationship might end. I realize that’s a horrible and unhealthy way to live life. I don’t feel that way every day, but it does creep in whenever there’s even a glimmer of a thought about starting something new. It doesn’t feel safe to me.
I’m feeling broken again, and I don’t know where I left the Super Glue. This will probably pass in a few weeks, as April 6th gets farther away. After it passes, I’d like to stick it in a box and burn it.