The forced smile at work and the tears as I left the gate each day.
The craziness at home. My children .. my poor children.
The first BirthdaysFathersDayChristmasNewYear without him. All the firsts. I distinctly remember the first day I brought my children back to school afterwards and broke down at the gate, and the angel of a friend who saw me and walked me in. She knew.
The depression of the seemingly endless blackhole that stretched in front of me.
The hideous instability caused by my old boss who made it harder for me than it needed to be (because he is a petty, stupid man).
The desperation that I never spoke of. To anyone.
The hopelessness. The feeling of Just Not Bothering to do more than exist for the sake of my children; there were days that their presence stood (unknowingly) between me and oblivion. I couldn’t hurt them, so I continued on.
....and the meeting of a person whose mind is like my own. Whose situation is like my own and whose heart is like my own. Healing slowly, together.