Last Wednesday was Tony’s 2nd birthday since his passing. He should have been 45 but he is immortalized at 43. Having already checked off a birthday without him last year, I thought I was mentally ready for this day.
I was wrong.
When I woke up on the 2nd, I felt the weight of the day. As always, I did my duties as assigned getting the kids out the door for school. Next, I checked my work calendar to make sure I didn’t have any pressing calls to be on, then I laid down on the floor and let myself weep.
I don’t know why, but anytime I’m going to get a good cry in, I find myself on the floor to do it. I don’t sob in a chair, on the couch, or even in my bed. The floor is where I do my heaviest grief release.
Sometimes when I have a solid cry like that, I can turn the rest of my day around and it’s not all clouded in despair. His birthday was not one of those days. My face leaked all day. I couldn’t shake the feeling of missing him so completely. The loss of him feeling immeasurable with so many missed birthdays to go from here.
This is the first time I’ve had to look back at year one and think, maybe that was the fog everyone talks about. I never liked it going through the first year when people would say that to me. It sure didn’t feel like I was in a fog. I was feeling and facing a plethora of emotions and all the fog talk felt like my experience at the time was being disregarded. But the way his birthday hit this year was much different than last year.
Tony and I usually shared our birthday celebrations, since our birthday are 4 days apart. So yesterday, I turned as old as Tony ever got to be. We were supposed to grow together and now I am growing older without him. That was not on my vision board people! I am sure this factored into my overall melancholy on his birthday.
I knew last year, my first three birthdays without him would be a struggle. The first one without, the one where I am as old him and next year, when I will be older than him for the rest of my life.
Maybe the experience of this year will help me be more prepped for next year, maybe not. At the very least, I know not to over program myself for the day. I need to leave space and time for a good floor cry.
At least his birthday is first. I have a chance to grieve and then mentally prepare for mine. I have a wonderful group of friends who go along with my shenanigans. Last night, we went to the Chiefs game and rooted our team onto victory in an overtime win. We got home well after midnight, but spending the day surrounded by friends and cheering until we lost our voices made the hard day a little brighter.