BHD wrote this yesterday, in response to my post about Horatio: What others call courage you probably know as simply keeping on with life.
Something as public as a blog sort of forces you to take all the feelings you have inside and sort them through and make them palatable for the rest of the world to read. I suppose there are those who would call that "courageous" or the exercise "therapeutic". And they would, perhaps, be right. But it's only part of the story.
Others have made me aware that there are a few of you out there in Blogland who are reading this because you're trying to process a loss of your own, and you're thinking, "Holy crap! I am five months (or 8 months, or 3 years) out from losing (someone very dear to you) and I'm still a blubbering idiot most of the time. Why am I not moving along like she seems to be?"
I wish I could tell you that I’m 'OK' and 'taking things day by day' and all that – and I guess in reality that’s what I’m doing. But really? I’m pretty effing far from OK. I have exactly 12 functioning brain cells (up from 6 last week, but still) and a hole in my heart the size of Wisconsin. Probably a good thing that I’m too old and fat to join the Army Special Forces, otherwise I’d probably enlist, just on the off chance that I could get myself killed in an honorable way and it'd let me be close to her faster. So don't let the composed exterior fool you.
And I'm going to let you in on another secret: All the books and whatnot say that the 'milestone' days are really hard when you lose a child. And they are. But the thought that the 'milestone days' are the really hard part of all this? In my experience, that’s a big, fat lie. The really tough days? The days that make you really, honestly think that you wish you had the stones to go join the Special Forces or something? That would be just the regular days. The days that don’t require you to do anything. The days when you don’t have a “role” to play. The days when you can't put on someone else's face and pretend that this is all some macabre production number. The days when you just can’t distract yourself from the awful, painful reality of your loss.
Tuesday. Sunday. Laundry day. Those are the tough days. The days when you have to look, search, hope that you'll find some meaning, some purpose to why you and your geriatric cat are both still here when three months ago, you were worried about how she was going to cope with eventually losing you both. That meaning is tough to find. And believe me; I'm looking pretty hard. It sucks. It hurts like hell. Makes me want to sit and blubber like an idiot.
So, blubbering idiots of the world, unite. We are all brothers and sisters in this club that none of us wants to belong to.
Thanks for being here, to give me someone to reach out to. This is helping me. And if you're reading because you're searching, too, I hope it's helping you.