The end of April is a hard time for me. I’ve told you all that before. Four years ago my husband was battling lung cancer during the spring of 2019. It’s a battle he lost. As Spring comes each year, the last weekend in April is always hard.
Part of me loves the Facebook Memories app. I can go back and see how the grandkids looked two years ago. I can see when I planted the garden. I can see prom pictures of my kids who are grown and have kids of their own. But, on the flip side, I can see pictures like the one you see below.
I would give a lot to stop my life right at the moment I snapped this picture. It was an innocent moment… little did I know that hours later my life would completely and totally change.
About 18 hours after that first picture came this picture.
For those of you who are like me and don’t know how to read an X-ray, this is the picture of …
my husband’s broken neck. The cancer had moved from his lungs and took up residence in his neck, eating the bone and breaking his neck.
You can see why I want to stop time in the first picture. What came next was really hard. It wasn’t fun. We started to realize this cancer wasn’t going to the bump in the road we thought it would be. It was going to be a fork in the road and my husband and I were no longer going to be on the path with our family.
Greif is so weird.
I was talking to a cousin of mine who lost her husband. Her husband died two years ago. Both of us talk saying it seems like yesterday and it seems like it was forever ago.
Both of us talk and say during the time our husbands were sick, we have bright vivid memories of some stuff and other things we can’t remember much at all.
Both of us talk and say we have flashbacks from time to time…especially at this time of year when things were the worst for both of us.
During the smooth times, I often think I have the grief thing all figured out but I don’t. It’s really like an onion and comes in layers. Some layers are thin but they are hard to break free. Some are thick but pop off easily without even trying. Some are really more like a membrane but oh, they are hard to get off. Some have a little unusable piece along the edge. Each layer is different and is a challenge in its own way. Sometimes I cry when working with an onion…sometimes I’m just fine. Grief is so weird and so unpredictable…and so much like an onion!
Lately, I’ve been having some really annoying dreams. In every dream, my husband is there and he’s going somewhere and I can’t go. I beg to go with but he won’t let me. They are some pretty crappy dreams…They are all the same premise but all different settings. Sometimes it’s two dreams on the same night. UGH.
Part of me wishes I could tell my broken-hearted self who saw that X-ray for the first time that you will be okay. You will figure life out. You will figure out how to do all of the things you were worried about. You will cross-stitch bigger and more amazing projects. From time to time grief is going to catch you but you truly will figure out life again. It will come with struggles, you’ll miss him like crazy, but you will be okay. You will survive this.
It’s all grief and in a month or a day or a week, I’m sure it will settle down again. It’s just the layer of the onion I’m going through right now. I need to be patient. This is the nature of grief.