So grief is a weird journey. It is hard work. You can’t push through to get to the end because there is no end. It just becomes different. It is still there. The realization I had today is that in addition to grieving the loss of my husband there are a million smaller parts of our life that I will grieve. I am grieving the end of my childbearing experiences. The possibility of baby #2 is no longer a possibility. I am mourning the fact that Baby Loco will be an only child, not that this is a bad thing. Mr Loco and I talked about having one or two children. There is a little sadness in the possibility or thought of that second child that will not be. If we had a boy, his name would have been Calder in homage to our home town that has an Alexander Calder sculpture as the symbol of the city. If we had a girl we were debating between Jolene (another song name) and Ramona (another musical connection as the feminine take on The Ramones). I think Mr Loco was working on his sales pitch for Jolene.
I am mourning the intimate and quiet times we had together. I have the couch to myself. There is no more smooshing two bodies together to watch a movie after Baby Loco goes to sleep. I miss snuggling in his arms as I sleep. I miss holding his hand. I miss how he looked at me. I grieve each of those things and so many more. It is hard when one of these little things catch you off guard. Sometimes I think I am doing alright holding it together but WAM! I get hit with the memory of carpooling to work and holding hands while we drove. I mourn holding his hand. I mourn how our hands fit so perfectly together. I mourn how holding his hand-made me feel happy and safe and loved.
I can even get a little silly with my grief. I hate taking the trash out. For some reason, rolling the stupid trash can to the curb is my least favorite job ever. That was Mr Loco’s job. He hated cleaning the bathroom, so I nabbed that job. I would seriously rather clean the toilet 10 times than roll that bin to the curb. I mourn the loss of a partner who happily took out the trash.
I mourn the loss of my hiking partner. I mourn the loss of the guy that kept me three steps away from becoming a crazy cat lady and never leaving my house. Mr Loco was a pro at finding interesting things to do around the city. He was a pro at finding festivals and book signings and interesting events and volunteer opportunities and just fun ways for us to be together. I think if left to my own devices I would order everything to be delivered to the house and live in my pajamas. I mourn the loss of the one guy that saved me from turning into an old lady that yelled “Get off my lawn”.
I mourn the loss of the guy that just handled everything. He was the picture of calm and directness. He handled issues that popped up like a BOSS! Every time something pops up, I can’t help but think that this would be exactly the thing that Mr Loco would handle without batting an eye. In that moment, I mourn the loss of an amazing partner. I mourn the loss of that team-mate. Together we were invincible.
I mourn the loss of my Halloween partner in crime. He was always game to dress up. He was willing to go all in as a couple and as a family. I loved it.
I grieve for the lazy weekend mornings where he would cook a delicious breakfast. We each took a weekend morning to make breakfast. His day was always pancakes (that I tend to fail at making) or eggs. My mornings were typically cinnamon rolls or ebelskivers. Mr Loco always cooked with love. He first tidied the kitchen while making coffee. Then he would empty the dishwasher. (We tended to run it at night.) Then he would start executing his plan. It was always delicious. I miss the delicious food. I miss how happy it made him to make a meal for his family. I miss him all decked out in his grill master gear. I miss that our family consumption of sriracha has slowed greatly. I miss us chugging coffee together on the weekend. I miss spending the day in jammies with my best friend. I mourn the guy who was willing to be in charge of the turkey every Thanksgiving.
I mourn being married to the guy who was willing to make all the phone calls. I hate the phone. I hate making phone calls. He always saved the day while mocking me at the same time. I mourn my own personal IT guy. Mr Loco has the house set up on a network that I likely do not understand.
I grieve when I see a cool t-shirt that I know Mr Loco would like. I grieve when I go to make a purchase that I would waffle on and Mr Loco would tell me to go ahead. He would remind me that it is ok to indulge on occasion and he would remind me that sometimes it is not even an indulgence that I waffle on but a necessity.
I could seriously go on and on and on with little things that pop up every day. There are things I read that I know he would find funny. I watch documentaries, I know he would love. I grieve our tv watching tradition of each holding a remote and pausing when a discussion, explanation or wacky thought needed to be shared. I grieve the guy who would take not so flattering pictures of me and then show me later and we would both crack up.
I guess it took until today to realize that while there is the big picture grieving going on as well as grieving all of these smaller losses. I imagine they will forever pop up: seeing pregnancy announcements from friends, hearing about wedding anniversaries, date nights, seeing an older couple out for a walk….reminders are all around even when I am “not thinking about it”. I know once Baby Loco can put into words how she feels and can ask questions we will go through more grieving. As she grows we will continually revisit the big picture grief and I will grieve all of the small things that Mr Loco is missing in Baby Loco’s life. Baby Loco will likely grieve for the things she wishes Mr Loco could have been there for, questions he could have answered, and amazing things he would have shared.
Sometimes a bunch of little things add up to a hard day. Sometimes one little thing is a HUGE deal. Sometimes the big picture grief overshadows the little stuff. Sometimes it is all swirled together in sucktacular fashion. The one thing I know about grief is there is no right way to “do it”. You just have to do it in whatever fashion works for you in that moment. Tonight that means eating some cheesecake with Baby Loco while we sit in our jammies, bubble machine churning in the background, surrounded by baby dolls.