January 21, 2012 – "What is This?"

I find it interesting that most all my entries on this blog seem to be at night. Maybe it’s because I find this such a good release, and by this time of the day, I need to vent. But this week, and especially the last few days have been particularly difficult. Perhaps it’s because I have been holed up in the house having neither desire or ability to venture out due to the snow. At least in Minneapolis, they even plowed the residential streets, but no….not here!

Anyway, today I have taken most all of Marilou’s things and packed them to ship or taken them to Goodwill. Kind of a exclamation point to how I’ve been feeling the last few days. And maybe it is depression… I don’t really know. There’s so much that is up in the air in my life right now….I think it was yesterday, the thought went through my head… “Do older people keep on going because they have a sense of purpose in their life, or just because they haven’t died yet?”  The question comes out of this feeling I’ve been dealing with all week, of how much my life really was woven into hers. I wonder if she knows that now? I sure feel it. I have missed her so much this week. And I still have all around me those reminders of how much she meant to me. Even today, I took the last of her clothing to Goodwill. I dropped the bag of clothes off, and decided to go inside. Bad mistake!!  As I was walking around inside Goodwill, I was hit with this emotional bombshell…”This was her hangout!”  I have never known anybody who could get greater bargains from Goodwill as she could. It was a release for her… to just go isle after isle looking and grazing. That thought hit my mind, and my gut, and I did not run, but I walked very fast out the door, saying to myself… “Big mistake!!”

I packed up some pictures, and other things of hers to send to her sister. Her Dad’s bible… she was so glad to get that after he died. That was a treasure for her. Other pictures and mementos went in the box for her sister. Then I packed up a couple of her ball caps to send to Carol. She had this whole basket full of ball caps, and these were ones she got at Jonathan’s graduations from Trinity Seminary and Oxford University. If there was anything that characterized Marilou, it was her ball caps. They are gone now. Well, I have one pink Minnesota Twins cap, and one of her tie died T-shirts still hanging in the bedroom. Those will be the last link… I just couldn’t do that today.

So what is this? This malaise that hangs over me this week? Every day I have been “on the edge” of tears. I know what it is… and I suppose I should just “embrace” it and get on. Grief. It still is a huge part of my life. It is not something I can escape through business or activity. Like I said last time, it’s a stalker… it jumps at you at the worst of times. But this week it has been relentless. Everything  is a reminder. Friday night the prayer group came over. I do enjoy hosting them, and they seem to like coming here. But this Friday, I lit some candles and it was like… Marilou loved her candles… even lighting the candles poked a hole in my heart.

I’m trying to make some fairly dramatic life changes, like starting my own 501C(3) ministry… and I’m realizing, I don’t have her to bounce things off of anymore. She was always there to be a sounding board, and give me wise, sage advice. Even as I have been moving in this direction, there was one time when I could almost hear her telling me she doesn’t  understand why I don’t believe more in myself. — OK, now I’m trying to type through the tears again. It was that way all week. What is this? Why so intense now? Why for so many days without relief? I’m honestly not sure sometimes how it’s all going to look. I’m so used to her being a part of everything. And now… she’s not. Yea, yea… I know what you would say…”Oh but she is a part … in your memories… blah, blah, blah.”  Yea, but that doesn’t cut the mustard, it’s a flimsy way of trying to placate the intensity of these feelings.  What do I do, when every place I turn there is still, almost as much as at the beginning, that sense of loss… of her NOT being here? What is this now?

Then I remember… It’s still really only been four and a half months since she left. You know… that’s really not a very long time. I’ve tried hard. I’m trying to make it… I have virtually no income from Sentinel now… I’m trying to strike out on my own… people around me say it’s a good thing… I KNOW Marilou would say it’s a good thing… gives me more liberty to be myself..I’ve got a nice guy renting a room for three months… I’m trying….but..

Tonight…those four and a half months seem like it was only yesterday. Aren’t I supposed to be getting on with my life? Is sitting here writing this with tears running down my cheeks and my nose running into my mouth… is that getting on with my life?  I don’t know, honestly.  What is this? Is this what it’s going to be like for a long, long time to come? It doesn’t feel tonight like I’m making much progress.

But I’ll keep at it… the Lord has been near and has given me a number of promises as I have been spending more time in His Word. He has been patient with me as I have, even still, asked “Why? I don’t understand!!” I even had some thoughts that she got the better of this deal. She didn’t suffer much, she didn’t suffer long, and boom she’s with Jesus. And here I am trying to figure out.. “What is this?”  OK, it’s grief…OK

….’till next time…

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