Monday, September 20, 2010
By the time you all read this post I will be married. Even as I type these words I find that fact slightly unbelievable, because five years ago I was certain that my life was over. My heart was still beating, my lungs worked, my eyes opened each morning, but my LIFE was over.
I found the fact that the world as I knew it had stopped turning to be both limiting and liberating. On the one hand I was desperate to have my old reality back, and on the other I just wanted to move onto the next world as soon as possible. Either situation would have worked for me, because the point was to be with Phil again in one world or another, I didn't even really have a preference. Not caring was freeing, while desiring the impossible was infuriating. My days were marked by the swing of the pendulum...desperate, reckless, desperate, reckless. Looking back now I tremble at the memory of those days, and also marvel at the power of the human soul to somehow persevere. Because I have. Somehow I lived through the terrifying reality that my husband was dead, and that the life I reveled in was no longer available.
At one time surviving the absence of Phil from my daily life took every ounce of my energy. As I grew through my widowhood I began to see that recreating my life was actually a bigger job, made more complicated by the fact that not only did I lack the energy to create, but I lacked the desire. I wondered how I was supposed to manufacture a zest for life that I did not feel. Forgive me if you thought for a second that I actually have the answer to this rhetorical question. Because I don't. Personally, I consider the fact that a genuine enthusiasm for life has been returned to me a miracle.
(Disclaimer: I have been corrected before when using the word miracle, so I want to be very clear here. I am using the Michele Neff Hernandez dictionary of words and freely applying creative license to define something that I find totally incredible.)
Here are a few things I consider to be miraculous...the fact that my heart survived losing Phil because it really should have stopped beating, the idea that taking all of those little steps forward followed by huge steps back throughout the grieving process actually did move me forward, coming to the realization that love is worth the pain of loss no matter how devastating eventual separation will be, the finding of space for so many more people in my life and in my heart, truly knowing love and recognizing it when I felt a knock on my heart, finding a man who loves this new me in so many of the ways that the old me was loved for just who she was at the time, the fact that neither joy nor grief is mutually exclusive.
These are just a few things I personally consider to be gifts of an inexplicable nature. The fact that I can't tell you how I got here baffles me a bit, but grief has taught me to stop looking for the explanation and just enjoy the moment. Which is what I hope to report to you that I did every minute of September 18Th, and yes, I will post pictures. Thank you all for the outpouring of love and good wishes. I take them with me into this new phase of my life as treasures from the past that will brighten the future.