DEFINITION OF “TAKING STOCK”
: to carefully think about something in order to make a decision about what to do next1) We need to take stock of our life now and again.2) She took stock of her life as she passed the 2-year mark of widowhood.
KN Definition & Meaning with Merriam-Webster
Today I found myself wanting to put an ad in the paper to see if I can find my husband who died just over a year ago.
An unusual thought, I know.
It emerges from a brand-new place in which I find myself, since April came and went:
I am in year two of grief.
Is it possible that Year Two could be harder than Year One?
Although there is no research confirming this, many folks I have spoken with have reported it is true.
I am finding it so.
With the initial shock lessening, I’ve lost the buffer the first year provided. Things felt surreal much of the time….a kindness of grief?
The reality of Dan’s absence is more obvious for me in year two. I can rattle off in rapid fire all the ways he is gone from me: my life partner, who shared in meals, recreation, taking the trashes out, going on special dates, fixing things around the house, spending time with family, tackling budget deficits, saving for vacations, attending graduations, birthdays, beach days, and new baby visits: that man is.not.here.
He cannot accompany me. He cannot support me. He cannot bring his special magic to my life because (as year two reminds me) he is gone from this earth.
In so many ways, that last sentence is too much to bear.
Too much to digest.
Stream of consciousness writing, for blog or for journal, allows for blunt truth-telling. It’s too-much-ness is hard, but I find it helps somehow.
No matter year one, or year two, or year twenty-two – he is gone. Gratefully, I am still here. Glad to be alive, but sad he is not.
At this juncture, I search for Plan B
My current Plan B (always a changing landscape): hang loose in the watercolor world.
Yes. My life is different in a thousand ways.
Yes. The life we shared with its fun, faults, fabulousness, and failings is something I would repeat again (if given the chance) EXACTLY AS IT WAS, in all its beauty and frailty.
Year Two reminds me that is not an option.
Yes. I want to keep going, even if it is hard without him.
And, yes, there are times I want to give up.
Both are true.
The art of our life is best viewed by stepping back a bit and then squinting.
Try it, with this tree.
In my life, I am out of focus. Life is out of focus. Yet, like this fuzzy watercolor tree, there is still beauty.
Plan B, in Year Two (for today, anyway) is to search for the beauty in the now moments.
Nature’s colorful gifts.
The gifts of tending and befriending that I can receive and offer.
Today, that will be enough.