This almost sacred becoming, and how it happens…
I’ve spent the last 27 months on this Odyssey of Love for my dearest husband. For the man who helped me become who I am so that I could go out and do this. For the man who loved me with strength and humor and dedication. The man I loved in return.
I’ve gone to the 4 places he named for me. He was setting me on his own version of P.S. I Love You. Minus the actual letters/notes/gifts. I haven’t had anyone handing me those letters, as happened in the movie, but I’ve had people show up along the road, people who had no idea who I was, what my story is, who might as well have given me those tangible messages. Instead of that, Chuck sent me actual people to speak those messages to me.
Because this is how the messages are delivered to me, I know that I must continue on the road, finding those other places for scattering his cremains. This Odyssey is the creative process for my new life without him.
What I haven’t yet done in these past couple years and few months is fully own my part in this Odyssey. I’ve attributed all that has happened to the love he left behind for me. And it’s true that is what drives me, but I need to get fully honest with this.
A writer from a glamping magazine recently wrote a blog about my Odyssey *you can find it at http://www.farmgirlbloggers.com/category/suburban_farmgirl*, which I mention primarily because the article made me really look at myself through her eyes and shifted my perceptions for the first time. It made me look more deeply into how skewed my perceptions of self are so vastly different from what the world seems to see. And maybe that’s a good thing; it makes me feel stronger.
I saw what I think is the real me in that article and what I’ve done on this Odyssey for the first time, which I know can sound odd but is the truth.
So this is what I’m now acknowledging to myself:
My husband died and I took that devastation out on the road, when I was terrified to go out on the road alone but I was determined to carry out his final wishes and I bought a trailer even though I didn’t have a fucking clue what I was doing with that and I’d never camped and didn’t have a clue about that and I was worried about navigation and how hitch and unhitch and what if I got on the wrong road and had to back up holymotherofgod and how would I find my way and how would I see through the waterfall of tears and how would I know what to do and, ultimately, how would I live without him?
And I did it. And I’m doing it. And the love has fueled me, and continues to fuel me. And even in the midst of that very early grief, I knew enough to paint my car pink and the trailer too because I knew grief is isolating and I didn’t know anyone on the road and it would draw people to me and fucking force me to not isolate and talk to people and share my story because telling the story is how you get through it and I contacted newspapers and news stations and magazines and joined camping/T@bbing/glamping/women who solo on the road, groups and shared my story with them all and I grabbed emails with names of people I didn’t know and said I’m a widow and I want to write for your organization and now I am and I began writing my book and I connected with people all over the country and I talked and I talked and I continue to talk and reach out and I respond to emails from other widow/ers and sometimes veterans and people who are hoarders who want to not be hoarders any longer and how did I rid myself of my stuff they ask and not one damn bit of this happened by chance.
I’m going back out on the road this weekend, making my way to Texas, visiting friends and family along the way. I’ve a long way to go in this Odyssey of Love yet. Healing and the future and all that both of those words entail mean nothing to me and I’m not worried about either of them. Honestly, I’m struggling a lot these days; the grief is overwhelming but that’s okay. I have this story and I have PinkMagic and I have the open road and these are the things that will create whatever needs to be created.
This is what I’m promising myself and what I want to say aloud to you, all of my dear friends/family/followers:
The next phase of this Odyssey of Love is more sacred than ever before. My heart must be ever more open so that I recognize where I need to scatter my beloved husband’s cremains. This is on me now. It requires honesty from me; I must truly own my strength that has been there since the night he died. Yeah, it might sound overly dramatic to call this sacred but for anyone who knows of me and Chuck, and our love story and the story of our Happily Homeless travels and how it morphed into Happily Homeless is MoonStruck, you will know that no word can better describe it.
He and I had a love story. That love made me stronger. That love was…is…sacred in my life. It is the blood that flows through my veins, it is the beat of my heart, it is the determination in my gut, it is what causes me to turn right or left with my pink car that tows my pink trailer.
This…this is holy to me. And I don’t have to not feel the grief, not feel the devastation. I don’t have to change anything in me, I don’t have to stop the tears, not feel torn in every direction, not feel desolate without him, not feel confused and dislocated..nothing. All of that can, and will, come right along with me and I freely and openly own every bit of it, because this is my love story and I will live it forever because he was mine and I was his and that isn’t gone and it will never be gone and the world be damned if they get tired of hearing me talk about it because I haven’t even begun to tell this story. The world needs real love stories to balance the cynicism and lack of belief and so, folks, here’s one for the ages. Hear ye, hear ye…
This girl, who was loved by this man, who knew her better than she knew herself…this girl is on fire. It’s a sacred fire that will take me in all directions and, if you’re lucky, you might be able to hear it in person.