It’s been a tough last couple of weeks. I’ve fought sadness with all of my strength and mind, but my body and soul have other ideas. Another widow referred to this time frame as the “deathiversay dance”. I get it. Only it doesn’t feel like a dance, it feels like a forced march.
My head says I am done with ritualized grief. I am doing the right things. I have work that is meaningful and fulfilling. I volunteered to work a street corner for the recent campaign (which we won!). I’m running, I’m swimming, I’m going out with friends. I eat well, I’m sleeping…um, sort of well. I gathered things to install in the concrete threshold of the memorial groover, and then stayed to help with the actual concrete pour. Concrete is like grownup play dough, fun. I’ve made plans for the actual date. I will not be in town, there will be no cell phone coverage, and I will not be alone. I will have family, and friends, hot springs, and cold beer. I will laugh, but I will probably also cry.
As I wind up my body (yes, feels just like one of those wind-up toys) for another day of work and busyness, I just feel tired. A song on the iPod, or a karmic corner on a trail, can again hit me with a wave of grief. It doesn’t threaten to swallow me whole…but it does surprise me. I see a biker with a yellow jacket, or a sky that threatens snow, or come across Jim’s last wacky brain tumor words as I search for a work document, or the index card….that still sits by my bed…with the simple words “I Love You” on it. My heart is again in my throat. How does my body do this, when my mind has such different ideas?
We are headed to Burgdorf Hot Springs this weekend. There are new caretakers. They won’t remember Jim and me from the last few years. I am taking friends that have been with me many times, and others that will be introduced to the magic for the first time. We are also expected to get our first significant snow fall. This will likely give my mom a small heart attack as she pours over the weather radar in our absence. Be kind to her if you see her. Last year the snow held off until after Jim died. It would have broken his heart to see it, and not be able to play in it. This year we will wake up to it. It is right. It is hard. And, we will emerge from it on the other side. Snow this time of year melts. All dances, and forced marches, eventually end.