I feel that I have gone back to living my life minute to minute. I am guessing it has to do with the time of year. Plus I got a call last week from the cemetery saying that Pete's headstone was in and finished. That really jolted me. I felt in those moments that my world was slowly tipping over on it's side. Maybe not completely upside down but It was tipping and for now it was definitely not right side up. I felt anxious and panicked. Like "oh no, what now, what am I supposed to do.." As it there was something I was supposed to do about it. The conversation was brief very brief. Sort of like " OK thanks.. Bye." Once I got my wits about me with the help of a very dear friend. Who helped give me the questions to ask. I called again. And found out the details I needed. I there fore could pass them along to Pete's parents who were coming for a visit this weekend not just for the headstone but to see the kids as well. I did know that I wanted no part of it.. As if to say "OK thats great.. here you go, you handle it" So that is what they did. They got the financial part out of the way and came back to tell me that it would be placed in 2 weeks. Why the cemetery couldn't do it now. I don't know. So I feel that just when I start to put my life back together they will call and say "OK the stone is in" Ahhh. Not again. How many times will my would fall over and I pick it all back up. I guess too many to count.
The problem with the headstone is that it brings all those memories that were such a blur back into focus. They things that I wanted to forget and leave there in a blur now seem to be staring at me. As if we are having a staring competition trying to see who will look away first. I know that it will be me. Because I don't want to see. I feel it. I don't need to see it too. I kept having this vision of standing there by his grave with the plaque in place and then just lying down next to him. on the ground. Lying on my back with the sun blinding me in the face looking into a cloudless sky and seeing only blue. reaching out my hand for what? as If I stretch far enough I could reach into his grave and feel his hand touching mine. My fear of lying there and never getting up. Yes I know. I would get up I have 3 beautiful reminders. But in my vision I just lie there. next to it. with the hurt and the tears. The pain of my heart breaking and the blood of it all seeping back into the ground. In this vision I would eventually stand and then look at the mess. The mud from my tears the blood from my broken heart and wonder "what will grow in its place?" Beautiful flower's that never wilt? A new heart inside a different woman yet familiar all the same?
I don't know. But the pain . the emptiness. the horrid images of everything from the moment he went into the hospital to moment he didn't come out. All come rushing back. I have had this question running around and around in my brain recently and I keep wondering "when does surviving become living?" When can we stop the survival mode and just live. To take a deep breath and not feel that stabbing pain. Like the cut on the crease of your finger that reopens and bleeds every time you move your finger. I have heard so many people say to me "Well , It gets better with time." I want to say "really, it does?" cause time has passed and I would say it is harder with time. The harder part being I am done living my life without you. I have done it for 10 insanely slow moving months. That in some ways seem like a blur.. and in the next minute feel like the longest 10 months of my entire life. I mean ten months isn't say that long. If you look at it in weeks it's 40 weeks that gestation in a pregnancy. But 40 weeks is insanely long when you have dealt with losing the love of your life too early in your life. As well as, the after math of having a baby and raising 3 kids by yourself. being an only parent. in a life that you thought would always have two parents in it. It feels in this moment hard to even wrap my brain around. and I wrap my brain around a lot of things that most people don't understand. But this feels impossible. He is supposed to be here. He just is!
I know personally I never liked the word impossible. Because It leaves no room for possibilities. And really all things are possible. They really are. Good and bad. I mean I never thought it was possible for Pete to die at 37 years old. I never thought it would be possible to birth our child without Pete right by my side. Yet in the same thought I never thought it would be possible to touch so many people with my story without even meeting them. Or How many people think I am a role model, that is something I thought was impossible. Sure a role model to my kids. But to people who don't know me...well feels impossible. Because really I am doing what Pete would have wanted me to do. Keep going. I don't know how. But I do it. And I love my kids and I worry about them and I try to just push forward like pushing on a door when really I should pull it to open. That is how it feels when trying to go on with our life without him. Moving forward feels impossible, but it's not, it is possible.
I think sometimes that I must be the most confusing person. One minute things are impossible and the next it feels that everything is possible. One minute I am fine and we are all going to make it and the next I want to lie down next to his grave and stay there. Confusing. But real. I can't be accused of not being real because I dont know how to be any other way., I mean yes I am good at times of candy coating it and acting like everything is fine, that we are just trying to find our " new normal". In the next minute I want to pull out my bright orange t-shirt and let the world know the kids and I are coming, Stand back! Maybe real is what I have become. Not that I wasn't before. I was genuine. But I did a lot of hiding in the bushes. To careful not to let someone see me. Afraid of what you might think. granted People that say that they don't care what others think, on some level do. I mean we all do. Even me, in this whole thing. I think I just still want to be heard. Again confusing. Don't look at me, don't treat me like the lonely widow. But look at me, hear me, Write to me tell me what you think. take a closer look. Where's my orange shirt? But wait treat me like everyone else. I can't make up my mind. As Pete would say " and that's different, how?" Because I could never make my own mind up before. I always wanted to know what he thought. Even down to what we were going to eat for dinner. Now he is not here and I have no one to ask. Oh I know what the kids want to eat, but I still don't know what I want to eat. Thank goodness for only a few choices in the frozen food section. yet I still want to know what does he want to eat. And I can't ask him. Instead I stand around thinking what would Pete like. I ask myself "why does it matter" and "does it really?" The pain in my chest, the emptiness in my heart. Sit down. Minute to minute. Breathe. I must be crazy?
Right now "our" world is on it's side, confusing myself and the kids. Waking up going "oh hell another day." And wondering " When does surviving become living" I guess for now i take it as it comes. Down my Hunters Orange shirt, for when I want to be noticed and a jacket for when I want to hide.. Keep the word Possibilities on the tip of my tongue. A pillow for the times that I wish I could "pretend to lie down" Sunglasses to protect my eyes from seeing. . And always to remember that Aryanna, Petey, Chase Leo and I will someday learn to live not just survive. That light is there, We will make the decision to pull the door open, walk through and begin again. To embrace where we have been and move forward, on to our next journey.