I wrote the original blog in August of 2020 and a lot has changed in my life since then, but this blog is still so very relevant. I have added my current thoughts into the original piece to highlight how grief is not static.
The process of grief is long. Much longer than I thought it ever would be. Thankfully, grief evolves and changes and I think that when my grief changed to a “grief of my own” that was the real beginning of my reentry into a life of my own. I hope this blog helps, I know writing it helped me.
Soon it will be four years since my life imploded. My old life doesn’t even feel real anymore. I have more or less accepted that the life I had is over. But, I still miss the comforts of my former life. I miss feeling content. I miss feeling like everything was good in the world. I miss the peaceful, easy feeling I had when I was his girl. I miss being loved in such a fulsome way. I miss being adored. I miss all that I had with him. I miss the life I never got to share with him. This is my daily struggle. The missing and the mourning of what never was.
Nowadays, I’m not carefree like I was before.
I am still spontaneous and fun; but, my eyes don’t sparkle like they used to when I laugh.
I remain a joyful person, but I am not joy filled anymore. (There is a difference.)
I do have a strong sense of wild abandon in me, but something inside me remains off kilter.
Way, way off.
I admit, I am still spontaneous.
I have a genuine love of life and adventure – even without him.
But, the truth is, I love it all a tinge less.
I love everything in my life a little less enthusiastically now.
No matter how hard I try, I just can’t find the unbridled joy I used to have when he was alive.
Now, for this reason, I am endlessly restless.
No matter where I am, or what I do, a part of me feels like it is elsewhere…
I am continually seeking a way to soothe my feelings of disconnect and discontent.
I stare off into the beyond a lot.
Maybe I am searching for him…
Or, more likely, these days, I am searching for me.
Specifically, the intangible pieces of me that died when Mike died.
I have stopped searching for Mike because I know that I can search for the rest of my life and I will not find him.
He is not findable.
He is gone.
Hopefully, I will have more luck in my search for me.
Over the years, I have completed a lot of self reflection; and despite my study, I am still not whole.
I wonder if I ever will be again.
I doubt it.
I don’t think you can possibly return to a whole state when you are separated from someone you love so deeply.
Somethings are not fixable.
There is no returning to the state of being I once inhabited.
I think, at best, I will rebuilt a remarkable life; but while I live this beautiful new life, I know that a part of me will always be searching for the woman I used to be. *ADDENDUM: January 2022. I don’t search for who I used to be. I just don’t. She is gone. And, the parts of me that survived are alive and well and I do not need to search my Soul for these parts of me, they simply are present.
In the past, I was on the look out for the woman who was filled with excitement about the future she was going to spend with Mike. I missed this person I once was. I missed her so very much. And, in 2020 my grief evolved into a grief of my own. I spent a great deal of time mourning the woman I used to be; and, concurrently, I mourn for the woman I could have been if he did not die so unexpectedly.
I missed both these women. Both the woman I knew and loved; and, the woman I never got to know because Mike’s life was cut short. These days, the woman I used to be feels like a fictional character to me. At best, she is someone I recognize from my past; but, don’t intimately know her anymore. Like Mike, she is gone.
And, how I miss knowing her and being her. I mourn the loss of her. The truth is, I miss my old life a lot. It is not just Mike I miss. It is the me I used to be that I miss too. I have spent most of year three grieving the loss of myself. I recognize that when I buried Mike, I also laid to rest who I was and who I had the potential to be when he was alive. This isn’t to say I lost all potential. I didn’t. But, the woman I would have been if he didn’t die – she is gone. I have spent the first 3.8 years laying her to rest and then I worked on resurrecting a new person from the ashes of who I used to be.
Today, I have a good life once again. Somehow, the heaviness of my grief lightened. My life became louder and my grief is much quieter these days. It still lives in me, but it no longer consumes me. I have recreated a life I enjoy living and you can too.