What I really didn’t realize was that when my husband died that day last July, that it wouldn’t be the only time. He dies every day in my world. My days are what seem like an endless list of tasks, and of phone calls to strangers at companies that start with “I’m calling to let you know that he is dead” – again, and again, he is dead. My friends text me all these months later with “I’m doing this fun thing today, what’s on your agenda?” and my response is usually “I get to call and tell someone that Gary died” or “I have to sort my dead husbands belongings to donate what no longer belongs here in my new life on my own”.
I’ll admit that I took time off during the recent holiday season. Maybe I let stuff slide that I shouldn’t have and maybe some things were late as a result – but I had to take a break from his dying for a little while. At least I’ve come to terms with everyone else going on with their lives; Gary’s death is just an anecdote now for most people that knew him. He died so young. He was such a great guy. Etc. Life goes on. Whatever.
This morning I was finally allowed into his work office to collect his personal items. His work wife – the person that adored Gary as much as I did, and that didn’t really know that I existed until I had to call her last summer, introduce myself, and tell her that one of her favorite people died – made the arrangements to get me in. She met me there and we cried together. Her loss is so profound and I wish I knew how to comfort her. Gary dies every day in her world too as emails with his name pop up in threads, and projects they worked on together are now hers alone. She helped me sort out his personal items in the office so some random person can now sit at his desk, use his computer, look out his window.
I wish it were like in the movies where the loved one dies, the funeral puts a period on the sentence, and the widow moves on. But that’s not reality. At least not mine. I go through every day confronted with his death. He dies every day like some cruel Groundhog Day adaptation, and I am left in the silence of this empty house.