Friday, October 19, 2012

I'm So Tired

This image seems so familiar...

I’m tired - surprisingly tired.  My determined effort to make progress on the things that need to change in this big house continues.  But even the most minor movements forward are exhausting.

I remember this type of tired.  It’s not the “I haven’t slept for 10 days” tired.  It’s not even a “I’ve been re-roofing my house” tired.  It’s different but familiar.  I haven’t felt it since, well, Maggie was with me to lift me through the exhaustion with her smile.  Now, I have no reward.  I have no sweet angel's smile to push me forward.  Even progress is no reward.  I only have what It Is.

It Is me sorting through books wondering if she read them, when she read them or why the heck she read them.  It Is me flipping through the pages of the books and finding purchase receipts or random notes used as bookmarks, looking at the dates on the receipts and trying REALLY HARD not to go down that If I Only Would Have path to Crazy Town.

It Is me sorting through the silverware wondering what the heck this particular serving spoon was used for or if this thingy was expensive or if this what-the-hell was a gift someone gave us that I should be remember and maybe offer back as a memorial.

It Is me wondering why the heck we have so many wine glasses…. And then choosing to separate those down to only the matching sets even though I don’t drink (and have never drank) wine.

It Is me doing every possible thing I can do to stay committed while I push with every ounce of strength I can summon as I stumble clumsily yet with surprising clarity through this insanity. Yup.  That's what It Is.


Last Wednesday and Thursday I took pictures off the walls.  (Yes, it literally took two days.)  Saturday, slowly and with many, many tears, I took the pictures out of the frames and placed them on the coffee table.  Sunday…. Oh, lord, Sunday, I put the pictures away in a box.

I’m so tired.

I will not stop.  I will honor my wife, my love, my Maggie by completing this task.  One life was lost despite every desperate effort we made otherwise.  I refuse to allow one lost life devolve into two.  It's now my job to look after the one she cared the most about.  Thus, to honor her, I will exert every effort I have left in my soul to find my new life.  I will not fail.  I have little to lose because I have so little left. But that's more than Maggie has and, for her, I will not stop.

But I’m so tired.


  1. Funny how these tasks literally seem more exhausting than running a marathon. I'm inspired - I have been at the same task for three years and am still not totally done. Ironically, one of my last remaining tasks are all the pictures.

    Good luck. Keep us posted on your progress.

  2. Oh Chris...what an inspiration you are and you are probably not even aware. I absolutely understand and feel the same "exhaustion" as not attributable to a physical exertion but an emotional one. It is more draining to me than running a marathon.

    As I was reading through your blog and felt this extreme love that you have for this beautiful girl named Maggie, I wondered if my husband would have felt that about me if I would have died first. You are demonstrating your love for her in so many ways.

    Keep going!!! You will make it!!!!

  3. It has been over four years and I still have the momentos in the box, the pictures in totes and it all stored away. I have managed to move on with my life in many ways, but there are certain tasks that bring back the exhaustian that keeps me sitting on a couch, non-productive. non-responsive,remembering the loss with grief and despair. It gets better but it never disappears and I will move from this place once again. You will too.

  4. Chris,
    You should be tired, you've been pushing that boulder for far too long! If only that was your task, there would be a physical reason to be exhausted. Grief and healing are exhausting, no one knows that better than all of us. I sometimes wonder how on earth will I ever accomplish all that needs to be done. It was so much easier with the two of us, I am just not motivated any more, so everything takes twice as long.

    Yes, I will move on too, but at a much slower pace for awhile. I'm also learning to live with much less "stuff"; like your wine glasses, my screw driver count is up to 76. Time for a nap.

  5. Aaargh.
    1) I recognize the herculean task you have undertaken, and wonder (two years out, with everything of my husband's just where it's always been) what drives you to put the pictures away, how you manage to do it, and how it feels once it's done.
    2) I recognize your love, and feel some hope knowing that my husband and I were not the only two people in the world who felt we had found something so rare and special. I don't know why it helps to know that other people love each other fervently, but it does.
    3) I hope you find the thing that will help you through your exhaustion, to a place of new strength. And I hope we can all join you there, someday.

  6. It has just been a year for me and while early on I had to move things and rearrange things and dispose of things to make the house manageable for me, there are still things here that I touch regularly to remind me of him and our time together. I hope you are able in the midst of your task to see your wife and to feel her love in the items you touch.

  7. Wow I relate to this. I bought two boxes. The two boxes that I decided would hold it all. That will keep all the memories because I couldn't look at them anymore without them wrenching my heart. I went fast at first and put everything I could find pictures, an ornament, deck of cards, and our wedding bobble heads into the box. Now I have slowed way down. It is getting much harder. This reminded me to keep going. I am proud that I started. It is so hard. I bought two frames along with the two boxes. They don't have any pictures in them. I am hoping with everything I have that I will soon be able to fill them with a new picture of my life that is meaningful. It is good to read why you are going on. It makes me feel more certain that going on and hoping for more than just maintaining is OK.