Gone. And Grief~

This grief.  How grief will express itself in the human mind and body.  It isn’t just a matter of the heart and the unmeasurable soul.  There is brain activity involved.  The physical body is involved.

It isn’t as easy as getting over it.  Moving on with it.  The physical bio-rhythms ebb and flow, dipping and flowing in the dance of life.  If it were as easy as a mindful decision, I’ve no doubt anyone going through this would stop it short.

It also isn’t a matter of not feeling blessed, not feeling grateful for having had your loved one in your life.  It isn’t a matter of trying to remember the good times.   It is, in fact, the remembrance of those good times, the feeling of being blessed, that bring the shattering pain because it brings too, the sure knowledge that those times are as gone as your loved one.

Handsome Husband and I were so blessed.  We didn’t take one another for granted, even before his first cancer.  Each day we woke up together was a day to be grateful and feel blessed.  That’s why we touched so often, why we held hands, why we danced and soaked in each and every moment with each other.   We loved passionately because we knew life didn’t promise us one more day.  We talked about things that mattered, in the midst of the minutiae of life and raising kids and maintaining our house and jobs.  In the years he and I full-timed on the road, we talked about after, about what we would each want for the other.  We talked about what we wanted for our memorial services, about how we wanted to be remembered.   We spoke as deeply as we knew about what it would be like for the one left behind.

And, no, we could not know what the reality of being left behind felt like.  We each agreed that we’d like the other to find another love while agreeing that it would be an unlikely possibility that we’d find someone not the same but someone who could be held in the same high esteem.  I teased him that he’d have women all over him if I were to die first and he’d tell me quite seriously that he couldn’t imagine another woman for himself.

From the day I met him, Handsome Husband was the only man for me.  The first time I saw him in his Air Force dress blues, I almost swooned on the street, he was so gorgeous.  And then I saw him in his BDU’s and notched that up even higher.  As the years passed, as happens with so many men, he grew even more handsome.  He gained confidence and made my blood tingle whenever he was around.  My nerves would jump to the top of my skin and I’d feel electric.  Yes, I was head over heels in love with him.  His humor made me roll my eyes, he was obsessive about things but he knew things I didn’t know and I loved his mind and its’ workings.  CollqqqageHe had a twinkle in his eyes, and a smile in his eyes, whenever he gazed at me, or whenever his eye caught mine.  He was a romantic through and through.  He was charming and could talk to women and women in turn, were charmed by him.  Who wouldn’t be?

He’s dead now.  The emptiness beside me is complete.   I study pictures of us over our years together and thank him for bringing love into my life and my heart breaks that this most beautiful time of my life is done.

Here is grief:  Most days it’s all I can do to keep my feet right where they are instead of letting them run in all directions, any direction, carrying me screaming into nothingness.  On any day the pain of grief makes me want to tear out my hair and shriek at the unendingness of this, my life without him.  It makes no impression on me that I’ll see him again someday, if indeed that happens.  I’m only in the here and now.  I don’t dare think of 2 hours from now, never mind “someday”.  That word isn’t even in my lexicon.

This grief, this pain that isn’t just mine but belongs to so many.  This grief experience that has been felt by women around the world since time began.  This unbearable, unimaginable, fucking, devastating, loneliness of not having him with me, talking to me, touching me, being with me.

I lean over the sink and want to throw up with the actual physical pain that shudders my insides and tears them up and hitches my breathing and tears through my skull in a pulse beat that can be counted as I remind myself over and over and fucking over again:  he’s gone, he’s gone, he’s gone.  And the pain shrieks up inside of me.

It’s been a little over 9 months.  Don’t tell me it should be better by now.  Don’t.   I just stepped away from his bedside, after kissing his suddenly turned white lips.  My insides are raw and bloody.  155687_4677487816255_2019975360_n



19 thoughts on “Gone. And Grief~

  1. My heart breaks for you Alison and I so wish that I could take away your hurt.
    I wish that I had had the honor of knowing HH, but thru your blog and TOH posts
    I kinda have met him. Hold tight to your love for him as that love will endure forever.

  2. I know how you feel about cancer. I hate this horrible disease! It took my dad April 11. My heart is with you and wish you the best. I used to have a pink camper too, but sold it when my dad got sick.

    • Charla,
      Your dad died right before my husband then. I watch my kids grieve their dad and my heart reaches out to yours in your missing-ness of your dad.

      May we all be blessed, as we remember them~

  3. I have been following you for the last 4 or 5 months. You and I are on the same road! My Handsome Husband passed away from cancer one year ago tomorrow….Jan 30! I am with you in your journey! God bless you! Judy

  4. Dear Happily,
    My heart aches for you. As a one year ovarian and endometrial cancer survivor and 6 month recipient and new student of Healing Touch Therapy, I can’t help but think that this gentle energy therapy may be able to bring you some spiritual relief and healing. I am envious of your Tab cross country journey, a teardrop retirement dream of mine. What a journey you are on. Your honesty is remarkable. I am sending you healing energy from the Universe. Respectfully, Carol Stopenhagen

    • Carol,
      Your words touch my heart and I thank you for them. I had some integrative healing therapy/Reiki, done a few months ago and the healer gave me a mantra that continues to see me through this: one step, one breath, one heart beat. I repeat it frequently.

      The Universe continues to put people in my path. Whether it is my husband directing it from wherever he is, or me putting it out there, I don’t know. But something is working and the more open my heart is, the more it happens.

      I’m blessed in so many ways, in spite of the devastation.

      I know at some point I’d like to learn more about Healing Touch, so that I might better serve in the name of Love.

      I wish you well, and continued healing~

  5. I don’t think there is a time period for getting over grief. I believe it stays with us, even though we go on with life. Especially if we have been blessed with a person in our life that is our soul mate. It has been over a year since my heart sister died and I still miss her. Sometimes I forget and want to call her telling about the latest news. So I have these conversations in my mind. Perhaps she hears me…

    • I get where you are. With all that’s happened since Chuck died, all that I’ve learned, I wish so badly for him to be here to talk to, to share this with him. And yet, I wouldn’t be here if he were still alive.

      Wishing you peace as you find your way~

  6. There are no words that I, or anyone, can say to make the grief any less. What I CAN tell you, is that you have a whole world full of people who love you without even knowing you, and who can feel some of the grief through your written words. My prayer for you today is peace. NOT that your grief will go away, because you will ALWAYS have a hole in your heart, but that God will give you calm in the midst of this hurricane that you are living in. That when you feel like you are about to go under because of the insurmountable grief, that you can feel HIS hand gently lift your head out of the water so you can grasp one more breath.

    • Pat,
      I feel the love and support so strongly, from you and others around the country, and I wouldn’t be where I am if I didn’t have it.

      Your words are gentle and loving. Thank you for them~

  7. Been following your journey and wanted to let you know I am listening and am deeply touched beyond words at the love you shared with your husband.

Talk to me~

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