Sunday, April 21, 2013

Small Spaces


Yesterday I was driving with it in the car.

It being the death certificate.

I was closing the last account that was in Seth’s name. Our internet service.

When I was talking to our not so friendly internet provider, they told me they needed to see the death certificate. My heart started pounding.

That meant I had to go there. Into our locked safe, into the envelope, the holds the pieces of paper that were the start and end of our life together.

After talking to the internet company, I was frazzled. I was sweating, panicky, and nervous. I put off going there. I put off handling the piece of paper. I put it off, until I couldn't anymore.

I hate going there. For that one piece of paper. I hate that piece of paper.

Manner of Death: Suicide
How injury occurred: Shot self with blah caliber pistol.

Why does one piece of paper, send me into a tail spin? I am fully aware my husband ended his life, but that piece of paper is a huge grief trigger.

It seems so permanent and so… cold. Too insanely blunt. Could they not have put that he fell and died from a boo boo on his head? Could they not sugar coat this for me? Maybe give me a real death certificate and a sugar coated death certificate, so I could choose which certificate I was willing to deal with that day?

As I was driving to the internet provider’s store, I looked over at the passenger seat. The envelope that held our whole life was just sitting there, mocking me. I couldn't help but think about… how can 10 years together, be printed on two pieces of paper, and fit so easily into one envelope?

I started thinking about how our 10 years together now fits into several small spaces. His urn. His whole body, placed in one little urn. His belongings, fitting easily in my old steamer trunk. And our marriage and his death, all in one envelope.

How is it that when he was alive, his life and stuff filled every room and space in my house and heart? Now, 32 months later, it all fits nicely in three tiny places?

These little places and little pieces of paper are a land mine of grief and a life lost.

At least this trigger can be put back where it belongs, locked away in the safe, folded nicely in a little envelope. 


  1. Good to know i am not alone when it comes to dealing with the death certificate. It has been 9 months.

  2. I'm sorry you have/had to go through this. Hopefully going back to the good memories can help you through it a little easier.

  3. When our cell phone provider asked for a death certificate in order to update my phone, I went to another company and had them import my number. Why does a cell phone company or an internet provider need a death certificate? Are there really that many people faking their spouses death in order to close an account?