Friday, May 4, 2012

Maggie's Angel Day v3.0

Three years. How could it possibly be three years?

I feel like I’m still waiting for her to walk though that door while I timidly busy myself to trick time into passing. My bold forward movement in life has been replaced with a time warp of what-the-hell-do-I-do-now. But, damn it, it’s been three years!  How could it possibly be three years since the last time I held her hand?

I feel like I’ve failed in so many ways. I can’t help but think that she’d be kicking my ass from sunrise to sunset because of all I haven’t done. Making it worse, it’s so easy to compare my progress (or lack thereof) to those who have moved forward in ways that I look at with wonder as if what they’ve done is magical because it can’t possibly be real.  Yet it is; they’ve made progress in ways I haven’t. “Ergo,” (said with my best arrogant professor-esk lilt) “I must be a failure” (making sure I raise my eyebrows, squint my eyes and look down my nose at myself.)

Yeah, screw that.  But I fight back with less punch than I’d prefer.  Days can still be difficult and despite all my blowing, I don’t have much of an enthusiastic wind blowing my sails…. Yet.  But I’m certainly not a failure.  I’m still just trying to find my center.

It’s interesting to hear about how people observe their loved one’s Angel Days.  Each tradition is so unique and steeped in meaningful reverence.  Yet, I don’t do anything specific.  In fact, I’ve been careful thus far to prevent accidentally creating a ritual.  Maybe at some point I’ll find comfort in one but for now, like I’ve written before, May 4 really is just another day, just like all that have come before it. All are tough and every single day I miss her so I don’t really need a “special” day to remind me my sweet wife died.

However this year I’m taking a liberty: I’m taking the day off and I’m going on a long motorcycle ride. There’s just something about riding on two wheels that quiets the mind.  Two-wheeled Prozac and a long road in the country.  Yes, please, I’ll take some of that, thank you.


  1. Ways you have and will continue to kick ass, my widowhood yoda:
    1. Consistently helping others on this journey
    2. Following your heart and your gut
    3. Maintaining your positivity
    4. Maintaining your hope
    5. Maintaining your ability to keep your heart open and soft despite what you've been through

    What's not to be proud of?

  2. It's hard being a widow/widower. That's an understatement. I think one of the hardest things is getting to the end of every day and not being able to look across the room at your spouse who can say "lighten up! you are not a failure!" and we all need that encouragement. Be kind to yourself. And enjoy that motorcycle ride. It gets easier, and your center is near. I'm 5.5 years out and things are easier now than when I was at the 3 year mark. You have a lot to be proud of - you have survived, you are here, and you are writing about your experiences. There is much to be proud of. Hugs to you on this angel day.

  3. Hope you enjoyed the ride.

    Time does have a way of creeping some days, and then you turn around and years have gone by.
    Days are hard, nights even harder, but you will find your center. Hang in there. Thanks for sharing, as Cassie said, you are helping so many others by doing so.

  4. it's star wars day - "may the 4th be with you" - might be a good angle to start a meaningful, yet fun angel day tradition.

    1. May the 4th be with you is pretty awesome. Thank you for that! My "date" is the fourth, also, so I will now adopt it as well.

  5. Your comments heat me because I was just thinking this am that it cannot be 5 years since my husband died and I have had to deal with the reality of that. the only thing is--if you asked me if I am 100% sure he is really gone I would say no. Despite the funeral, giving away his clothes, etc. I know it on an intellectual level but not on an emotional level. How can something so real be totally gone? I just can't wrap my mind around it and believe 100% yet. Perhaps I am just nuts.

  6. Awesome post - I just hit 3 years on April 30 and really feel about the same way. Each of us is on our own yet somewhat similar journey. I like that you wrote that you are trying to find your center. You are accomplishing WAY more than you realize. Hope the ride was good.

  7. I'm only 5 months out, but his family and I want to get together on at least the first year of his death and release balloons at his grave, just like we did at his funeral/celebration of life. It gives us all a chance to remember him together and to talk about him. I love remembering and hearing stories about him.