Sunday, March 7, 2010


I no longer have a reason to feel crushed, yet that's exactly how I feel every Sunday when Jonathan and I part.

I don't feel slightly down, or moderately lonely. I go right back to the month, or so, I stayed out of work after Chris died, where I sat on my sofa, wrapped tightly in a comforter feeling as though the colorful quilt was the the only thing holding me together. I was safe inside the cocoon I had crafted, and reality could not reach me within.

I didn't know that the death of my spouse could leave me feeling as though my spouse has died every single time I am by myself; every Friday evening after work, when it seems that nobody is available to pass some time with me, every Sunday evening after Jonathan leaves, every night after the lights are out and all of my friends are sleeping, as I should be.

The pain of losing Chris is never going away, and although I feel much better in general, these days, I still have to fight to choke back tears on a regular basis.

Passing time opens me up like a meat hook tearing through flesh and I still don't want the day to come when I wake up and realize he's been gone for ten years. It has already been five years.

I don't really know whether or not I am still traumatized, but I cannot come up with an explanation for why I still have flashbacks, intrusive memories and sudden tearful breakdowns. Clay thinks I'm afraid that Jonathan will die, too, and since he has twenty years of experience in the field of psychology, to my B.S. in Psychology and about zero experience in the field, I feel inclined to believe him. I don't always believe I deserve to be with somebody I love and who loves me. If that were true...oh forget it.

Our society treats death as though it was a broken leg. Nobody expects me to still cry and fear loss and remain affected by what I witnessed Chris endure.

Friday, March 5, 2010

And I Do

So many changes, so many changes.

I haven’t written in such a long time that I’m having trouble deciding where to begin.

I have been feeling sad, lately, which isn’t surprising considering my systematic, gradual weaning off of Zoloft. I don’t want it, anymore. I don’t need it. My Z-tox is going well. I have decreased from two 50mg pills/day to one-quarter of one 50mg pill/day. By this time next week, I will have successfully kicked the habit.

Going off of Z has not been without discomfort in the form of withdrawals. I decreased nice and slowly, though, to keep the after-effects to all-time low.

I’m moving in with Jonathan in September. We love each other and I’m ready, even though there really isn’t any such thing as ‘ready.’ One of the things I love about him is that he knows everything about how I’m feeling. He doesn’t ever expect me to give up Chris in any way. He makes it known that anything I give up is entirely my decision and that he’d never ask me to give anything up until I’m ready. The load that takes off of my shoulders, my soul really, is worth everything to me.

I don’t like us living apart. I miss him when we’re not together, but I strike a nice balance between wanting to be with him, and wanting to make sure I respect his time and needs. Living together will be easier because we’ll get to be together even when we don’t have plans.

There’s a fight night at the boxing gym tonight and I have been thinking about how I don’t want to be there. Not wanting to be there is new for me. For more than two years I exercised myself to exhaustion to keep my grief in check, to cope and to have somewhere to be when I felt alone, which was all the time. I liked that the members were mostly men because I felt like maybe I would find someone there and even when I didn’t, I liked feeling like a desirable woman in a room full of men, even if that was only my mind.

The gym took on a surrogate meaning for me. For the past two years, I got to feel safe, and I got to work though so much of my fear, sadness and loneliness. This particular gym promotes a culture of camaraderie and support. There, I got to feel like somebody cared about me, and I really needed to feel like somebody cared after
Chris died. Now I have Jonathan, so instead of going out to fight night tonight just to be around people, I can be home knowing that Jonathan loves me.

I have never been comfortable with change, and feeling myself separate from the gym is no exception. Time keeps marching on and my life keeps changing and find myself fighting change just slightly more than I welcome it.

Tonight I’m left wondering if the boxing gym has served its purpose and if I will notice myself backing away now. I’m proud of the fact that I boxed for a while. I’m proud of the concussion I sustained. I’m totally, ever-proud of the changes in my body since the day I first walked through the door. I walked in wearing size 10-12 jeans and today my size 6 jeans are getting loose. I wonder how long I’ll be enjoying my new self before Jonathan and I try to have a baby. We both want to, but we also both realize that I’m 42. It’s in God’s hands.

Anyway…most of the time, because of the changes I am experiencing, I can’t collect my thoughts well enough to write about them. Like I said, I spend a bit more time fighting them than accepting them.

Chris is forever in my mind and in my heart, and instead of having to get rid of my memories of him, I get to nudge them over a little so my memories of me and Jonathan can fit, too.

And I do.