The changing of the leaves from green to bright reds and yellows inspired weekend trips to the mountains and discussions of upcoming adventures. Jason and I were children of the fall and loved the brisk cool air and the excitement of the oppressive North Carolina summer coming to a much anticipated end.
How do I manage this season without him? He died in the spring and it doesn’t feel as though a summer has already passed. I’m sad that he won’t get to see another October and visit Asheville with me one last time. We had so many things we were going to do once the weather changed. Camping trips, hikes with the dogs, brewery tours, another trip to D.C., night driving with the windows down while blasting M83 , visiting haunted houses to get us in the Halloween spirit… And now none of those things will ever happen again. I hate the finality of death. It just seems so fucking cruel.
I’ve tried so hard to step back from this loss and try to view it as a chance to grow and learn but sometimes I just want to cry the afternoon away and hibernate under my covers. I know that is still considered healing but it just feels so counterproductive sometimes. I spend a lot of energy trying to be positive for other people even when I feel completely dead inside and hopeless. I fell asleep yesterday afternoon and the first thought that came into my mind when I woke up is “my husband died from a heart abnormality during a race.” It seems like the only reprieve I get from these thoughts is during sleep…and yet the persistent voice telling me my husband is gone is the first thing I hear when I wake up. How can this actually be our life?
I read an article in Runner’s World a couple of years ago about a man who died of a similar cause and the story was told from his wife’s perspective. I remember thinking how would I possibly go on living if something like that happened to Jason…and then it did, and yet here I am. Almost 6 months later and preparing to celebrate what would have been a 3 year anniversary in just a couple of days.
There is no point in asking why these things happen or spending much time mulling over the unfairness of life. It just is. I think those of us who find ourselves in this nightmare just have to keep looking for the little things that can make us smile, even for a brief moment. For example my dog is intensely staring at me right now with two tennis balls lodged in his mouth. That is my sign that it is time to get off the couch and entertain him. And that makes me smile.