Life does go on after we lose someone. All of a sudden it is “poof!” And there we are! Sometimes with a degree of warning, like Thomas, it had been many months as for him, I waited for harder times with his health trying to prepare myself for what it meant for him. It was hard, but I was there! I took care of him. I gave my love and met his needs. I would not want it any other way. Being able to do that____ So, now there is a shift in my day where I am not doing what I was. More time. So, what to do? It’s not so hard because there is a lot to do! Part of that time has to be self-care. This is true for anyone losing a loved one. That counselor part of me gets this.
I reason there is still time for love and laughter! Sharing Joyce Hifler is soothing to my soul. Here she is!
“For whatever the reason, whether or not there is a sadness or a sweetness to tears, the deeper their meaning, the greater our capacity for living. And for all the reasons we may shed tears, probably the most frequent reason is from sheer frustration. It seems we condition ourselves for the major things, but frustration comes more often and in so many different ways it is difficult to pinpoint its beginning and control it. And so comes a flood of tears to relieve the tension and stress. They are not signs of weakness but have in themselves a cleansing that washes away hurt, humiliation, and yes, sometimes bits of old love that no longer hold a place in the heart.” (Not in this case but the point is made.)
“There is great truth that weeping may endure the night but joy comes in the morning. And so it is true that the darkness before the dawn tends more to tears and yet ushers in a more refreshed and more meaningful dawn when we can find humor in our most anxious thoughts. For in the light day difficulties are so ominous and we are not so terribly and seriously involved with ourselves. We come to a place where we can see what humorous combinations of mixed emotions, beliefs, disbelief, thoughts, and behavior we can really be and we learn there is something about laughter that heals too. To include a good measure of laughter in one’s daily routine is a must. It should be a part of each course at the dinner table, a sharing of the happenings of the day with the ability to laugh at one’s self. Sharing laughter with others who enjoy exercising their God-given ability to enjoy their humor produces an exhilarating sense of joy. Laughter is contagious.”
What makes laughter in my world? Merlock the cat! He always greets me, and pesters me! Insists on me doing certain things. I can not help but smile and laugh at him! Then there is my lovely daughter and her family. They make me smile and feel very loved and supported. And then there are lovely new and old friends! Who I am grateful for. There are memories of Thomas which always make me smile! Knowing I will be ok is comforting.
It’s been a long time sense I was on my own so to speak, and that was not for very long! I married right out of high school. I was the farm wife for 15 ½ years, of a nearly 21-year marriage. Raised babies and then went to college for art which broadened me as a person significantly. I found others like me! Then Thomas came into my world. So blessed! We were married for 22 years. Almost made the 25-year mark!
What kind of things make me cry? Running across cards he has bought me. Learning that the funeral director did find a pocket watch that is now inscribed in memory of Tom, and has a bit of Thomas ashes in it. That the lovely urn will come to me soon. I don’t have to make decisions on anything yet. But the plan is to celebrate Thomas’ life next spring with friends and family.