Now the night is over

This evening my inner jukebox and my Deezer flow and my feelings have been, maybe bizarrely, in sync. So prepare yourself for even more song lyric links than usual.

And I know it’s late, but I wasn’t ready for sleep.

But now the day is over, even for me, the night is drawing nigh.

I know it’s all just coincidence. But then as Gibbs says, with Rule 39 I believe, “there’s no such thing as coincidence“…so who knows?

And yes, it’s lazy of me. I should write more myself. And I’m sorry, but I have a really tough week ahead of me. and I just don’t have the emotional capacity right now. I’m too busy holding myself together. I have some friends gathering around me to get me over the final hurdle, but that isn’t going to make it any less painful. It will however, put one more thing behind me, and draw a line under things.

So, if other people can say  what I want to say better than me? Let’s let them do it. My walls are up, and they’re not coming down to write a blog right now.

So lets start with the only ear worm I’ve had today. I can’t remember it ever popping into my head before. He always made me feel on top of the world, and inspired me to try, and he’s still my shining star. So, maybe…?

And let’s follow that with the white flag that I will never be waving, as there will be no surrender. I’m in love with him and always will be, however life moves on.

After all, all I needed was the love he gave, and getting through every day without it is indescribably painful. I don’t think I’ll ever be whole again.

As my life continues, when I’m left home SO alone, especially with Tash going back to uni, nothing ever happens. It’s just me, here. I will be lonely tonight and lonely tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that.

All I can do is hope that maybe one day, as the song from his favourite film says, beauty will come out of ashes.

Can’t say I have much hope in that.
I reckon I’m just here until I’m pushing up my own daisies.

There, wasn’t that cheerful? I just have to get through this week. Get myself to Saturday night. And then I think I may go and get very, very drunk. Wisdom may come with age, emphasis on the may, but I’m not that old yet, even if I often feel like I’m ancient, past it, and worn out. So, wise or not, there will be sorrows to drown, and then hopefully locked safely away in Davey Jones’ locker, so that I can move on to whatever the future may hold. I’ve been knocked down, maybe I’ll get back up again. I have no great expectations. Just as well really.

How am I? Ask me no questions and I’ll tell you no lies.

The stars may not align, but I’ll still try and shine for you. Always.

Three simple words.

Been dreaming of you lately, so waking up has been hard, because I’ve wanted to stay where you were, however weird it was.
Been out a couple of times today, seen people, chatted, played normal.
Been trying to ignore the fact the the kids are away next week, which is I guess my first trial run of being here, home alone, all alone.

There’s lots I could write or say.
But it basically just boils down to the one thing.

I miss you.

All the time.

I miss you, and I don’t know how I’m going to survive without you.

This was supposed to be our time…and now it’s just me.
And I don’t know if me is enough.

When tomorrow comes

When tomorrow comes, Austin is moving out. Not for uni, not for a holiday. For good. He has found a new job. He has a place to crash for a little while. so he has a little time in which to find a flat of his own. And so my boy is finally flying the nest. Which is great. Fly, be free my little one. With all my best wishes and love and support as the air beneath your wings. We went out for dinner and marked it best we could. He is an amazing person, as anyone who knows him will tell you, and those who are on his road ahead, who have yet to meet him, have no idea how lucky they are going to be to have him in their lives. I’m trying to be brave. It is, after all, how it should be. But man…letting go hurts. Especially when things are as they are…

And then we will be just two. All two briefly. In a few weeks youngest will go back to uni. And then it’ll be just me here, permanently home alone. Which was always coming. As was the end of my maintenance support when she graduates. But all of these things were going to be ok, because we knew that, and Matt was going to be here and we were going to get through it together. We were going to work it out. We had it covered. And now?

It’s going to be just me. And I know I’m a grown woman, and I’m sure when it comes to it I’ll cope, because let’s face it, I have to. But man, I am so scared of being on my own all the time. This is so not how it was supposed to be. I didn’t know how bad lonely could feel…

In the meantime, I’ve just been dealt another doozy of a hand by life, which I can’t really share in detail here because, even though everyone thinks I’m mad, I refuse to lower myself to somewhere that is not right for me and for Matt and I. Yes, venting might make me feel better, but it would probably make things overall worse not better so, you know, why go there?

Even though my kids, and many others, have thought I’m mad, and too nice for my own good, up until today I have known that I can hold my head up high and that I have done the right thing throughout. I have checked in with everyone. I have kept in touch with those that matter. I’ve not let a special date pass without checking in on those others that it affected. I’ve done it for over a year. I am actually quite proud of myself for that, given some of the provocation that has come my way. I have done my very best to do the right thing in every situation, even if it’s been hard. And man, it has often been very hard. I have done the best for me and him, for him, in his memory and in his honour. I thought I was doing good. Aw bless, you stupid girl. *face palm*. I can practically hear him laughing at me…and then hugging me because he’d appreciate my trying.

But here we are, sad but true. It looks like I was wasting my time. And now, I think maybe, enough already. Apparently forgiving those who trespass against you doesn’t stop them from continuing to do so. I may yet have to gird my loins and find some strength from somewhere, and yes, I don’t know I’m going to do it, but I’m going to try and stop being a walkover. I hope I’m going to fight my corner if I have to. After all this time, after all I’ve done, if I haven’t earnt a little respect in return then…I dub thee unforgiven. And it’s what he would want. If he were here right now, he would be absolutely furious. Livid. Beyond that even. I think it’s time I was a little more him and a little less me. And he always believed in me.

There are two types of people in life. Radiators and drains. I have done my very best to be a radiator. I’m pretty sure I’m not a drain. But whatever I am, I’m sure as h*ll not going to be a doormat any more. No more Ms Nice Lady. So don’t tread on me. It’s going to be hard, it’s going to go against the grain,  but at this point, I really, and literally, have nothing left to lose. And maybe I’ll regain a little self respect. I honestly thought I was doing the right thing. It turns out I was wrong. However I think I can still hold my head high for doing my well intentioned best, even if it has turned out to be misguided. But now? That doozy hand has forced my hand. Gloves off… If anyone out there has some to spare, please send me some strength, and maybe some healing, and just, please, hold my hand as I try and get through this too? I’m not sure my breaking point is that far off… Life just seems to be intent on piling it on, one thing after the other. I don’t know what I did in a previous life to deserve all this, but I really hope I enjoyed it… 🙁

PS: It turns out that, looking at the links I’ve put in here, Metallica’s music pretty much covers it today. Just as well. If this all goes to pot, as seems more than likely, I’d just like to mention that I’d like Enter Sandman as my mid-service track, in case I forget to add that to the “important stuff” file. I’ve already informed the mob, but they may not remember….

Sunday’d be too late

So, it’s been seven hours and fifteen days… No it hasn’t. It’s been 367 days, or is it 368, and however many hours, but I’m not Sinnead O’Connor, quietly dripping one beautiful tear down a flawless cheek. I’m a messy, lost, emotional, rudderless, ugly crying, me. Sunday marked a year since you left us, and still, nothing compares to you, and nothing ever will.

I had so much to say on that anniversary day and I still do. So much. But I just haven’t been in a place where I could do it. I’d battened down the hatches, and didn’t want to open the floodgates. I have been lucky enough to be able to talk to, and spend time with, some very important people over the last two days, which has helped. I have been reaching out left, right, and centre…to friends and family…and then I realised, *face palm slap*, that what I was actually trying to do was to talk to you…so it’s no wonder that nothing was quite scratching that itch is it? If only… I live in a world of if onlys…

It feels like it’s been forever, and also no time at all, and yet it is also still so surreal that maybe it never happened at all. Sometimes I wonder if it’s all some kind of sick joke…and I’ll wake up and it will all be over. But, as that song says, I’m still here, and I’m still not dead. And you are. It’s still all far too real.

It would have been the worst year of my life even had it been the only tragedy to have happened in it, which sadly it has not. Every time someone has said things couldn’t possibly get worse, they have. It has been a year of complete h*ll, and it hasn’t suddenly gotten better just because that year has passed. I am quite honestly surprised that I am still here, no thanks to some, and heartfelt thanks to many.

Being neither Sinnead O’Connor, nor Prince, I don’t do lyrics. So I thought I’d try a poem. Maybe this would be his song

And I did write one. But I just couldn’t get it. Because there just aren’t the words. However I tried, it all felt clichéd and trite and it’s all been said so much better by others… I’m no W.H.Auden, no AE Houseman, who both say it better than I ever could. As ever, I’m just me. I tried, I did my best, and I was going to put it here. But I just couldn’t do it well enough to say it all in a way I could be proud of.  I couldn’t do you justice with my words, and I didn’t want to get it wrong and let you down. So many others have done and continue to do it better.  If I could, I would write you a poem, I would sing you a song…but I’m not talented enough. You’d get it though. You always did. We always knew what each other were thinking, but when we were apart we didn’t always have the words we wanted. Being apart was always so hard. It hasn’t gotten any easier…

I guess that’s why we used songs to say things to each other that we couldn’t say quite the way we wanted to ourselves, something you can probably tell from the links that have been scattered throughout my blog entries. We shared so many songs, so many lyrical words, and I am so glad I still have all our playlists, all those songs, for when I am able to listen to music again.

I couldn’t have this played at your funeral, though I wanted to. It’s a song you sent me a long time ago, but it would have been considered inappropriate, and I was only permitted so much influence over your farewell. But, whatever some may say, this is what we were underneath it all. Pure f*cking love. Just so as you know, I’m going to carry on being me, for you, because that’s what you would have wanted. In the meantime, here’s the song that said it when we laid you to rest…another one that you chose to send me. And I’ve still got love, so much love in my heart for you, and, come what may, I can’t and won’t let it go.

Through dangers untold and hardships unnumbered, we fought our way to be together. It took a long time, and it sure as h*ll wasn’t easy. Juggling everything we had between us sometimes made walking our life together a tightrope, but I’m so glad I got to walk along it with you. I’ll never let you go. And while I’m here, quoting away like mad, here’s one more song for you… Like so many films, but this one especially, your favourite, I can’t watch it without you. Your crazy still matches my crazy… And hey, I’m probably a whole heap crazier now than I was then. Grief tears you apart, and when, if, the pieces come back together, you’re just not the same, and never will be. There is always a crucial piece missing, and you are always broken in a way that can never be fixed.

I have no idea who I am now, but I am apparently a world of clichés and quotes, so why stop now? So, if the greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love, and to be loved in return, we were that for each other. Man, to be loved like that, and to love like that…just amazing. One year on I still love you as much as ever, if not more, and I’ll love you forever, to the beach and beyond. You were my new day, and you are still the little birdhouse in my soul.

We marked your passing in many a typical way, including a beach, with fizz, just the three of us. It all hurt like hell, and it still does. Life may be better at the beach, but being on a beach without you was a very hard step to take. It may have been an anniversary, but it was not a celebration. Just an acknowledgement of the time that has passed. And if there was anything celebratory about it at all, it was just that I am still here a year on, and I have made it through the many many times when I thought I would not, when I would cheerfully have gone gently into that good night and joined you.

So here we are. One unimaginable year later. Who knew you could cry every day for a year? I have been forced to learn so much about life, myself, others in that time… And here I am, still expressing myself by writing it all down, and since I’ve always been able to say more in the written word, be they mine or those of others, than those spoken in person, it’s helped, in so far as anything has, so I guess I’ll keep on doing it. In the meantime, here I am, lying here with all my thoughts inside this empty bed, and I miss you. If you distill it all, take all the words I write here, all the lyrics in these songs, and all the days I go through, that’s what you get. Three simple words that say so much. I miss you. And I love you. Another three words, that really go without saying, but I’m saying them anyway. I love you.

And so, life goes on. One foot in front of the other, remembering to breathe, one day at a time. It’s not really living, it’s just existing. But, like everything else, it is what it is. If only…

PS: Neck Deep have a new album out. You’d love it. I love it. And on it are so many songs we would have sent each other. It hurts, but I feel like I’m listening to it for both of us. It’s so sad that you’ll never hear it. And as they say on it, whatever storm is passing by…we all know nothing and we will all end up pushing daisies, and that’s the way it is.

Come as you are

So here we are. It’s this weekend.
It was a Friday when my world collapsed around me. This year the “anniversary” date falls on on a Sunday. And luckily, thanks to my antidepressants and other meds, there was no chance of me being awake early enough this morning to relive that Friday today. Silver linings I guess. Not that it really helped, I just got the flashbacks a few hours later. It’s all etched in my mind, in technicolour, every single detail. Which is ironic since my memory is usually rubbish… But I remember all of it. Everything. My brain frequently plays it over, and over, and over again…

So I’ve taken a few days off work. I’ve gotten a few things done, and I’ve made some plans, things to do with kids, and with some friends/important people over the weekend.

And here we are.
I should have been in bed hours ago.
But…

Because we are when we are, my brain has brought all my memories and thoughts to the front. Normally I can keep busy, hide in a book, whatever, to a degree. Now there’s no way of hiding from anything. It’s like having it all forcibly brought back into focus, and then being made to look at it all, live through it all, all over again. Not just the day, our whole time together. All those years, our trips, our everything. Memories popping into the present from nowhere. Memories that hadn’t popped up before. And man, it is so hard. I still can’t believe it. I thought a year would have made things better. It hasn’t. And it’s made a fair few things worse.

Every night this week, every time I’ve gone to sleep, my dreams have been mental. And fantastical and pure escapism, and so not what my life actually is. In short, somewhere I would far rather be.
And every time I wake up, reality settles in, sometimes instantly, sometimes it takes a while.
And then I remember.
Just like back then in the early days.
I remember.
And then I cry a lot.

I doubt tomorrow will be any different.
But we have plans.
My coping strategies for the weekend are locked and loaded.
I have beer, and wine, and fizz, and places to be, and people to be with, and if necessary I can spend the whole weekend just slightly comfortably numb. And I know they’re not healthy coping strategies, but tbh, I don’t give a monkey’s. I may even turn my phone off for a few days, and just focus on being mindful and looking after me. I will do what ever I have to do to get through this and out the other side.

But I still don’t want to go to sleep.
To be fair I don’t really want to wake up either.
But I’ll do both.

It’s going to be a sh*tty weekend.
I knew that.
So here we go…

Man, I miss my beautiful boy so much. And love him even more. Life’s just not fair.

Here comes the rain again

It’s raining outside.
Heavy fat drops of what is probably the edge of a thunderstorm.
Which is appropriate and apt.
Because I feel like I’m in the middle of my own personal thunderstorm.

Plans are being made, kind of on the fly, depending on who’s been in contact.
There will be places I go over the next few days with friends, family, both, neither.
I won’t be around here a lot.
And I guess I’ll get through this, because that’s what you do.
When you’re going through hell, just keep on going, as someone said.

I hope none of the worst case scenarios that have run through my head come to pass.
I hope I come out the other side feeling like I’ve marked it appropriately.
And I hope getting through the worst year of my life helps me feel better afterwards, and helps me go forward.

Time will tell…

In the meantime I still miss him so much it physically hurts…and I’ve been crying on and off all day. It’s almost impossible, as the anniversary approaches, not be be thinking about him, and that day, all the time. I just want him back. Which is the only thing in the world that I can never have.

SSDD, right?

And here’s the actual thunder. Awesome. And perfectly timed.
Plus I love thunderstorms and since I am, inevitably, awake, maybe I’ll open the curtains and watch the lightning for a while…

I just don’t know what to do with myself

It’s nearly here.
We keep trying to make plans.
People want to be there for me, whatever I want to do.
Some of our friends need/want to mark it too, but don’t want to impose.
Which is all very well, but I don’t really have a clue what I want to do.
I know what I don’t want.
I know where not to be and when.
But what do I want to do?

I want to mark it.
But it’s not a celebration. Anniversaries usually are. This is most certainly not.
Well, unless you want to celebrate the fact that I have survived this year, which after some of the times I have been through, I honestly wasn’t sure I would.

I don’t know what I want to do.
I don’t know what feels right.
I know that I probably need to get of town for a bit.
I feel slightly run out of town, to be honest.
I know where I’m not wanted.

I know I need to do what feels right for me.
But I really wish I knew what that was.

Maybe it will become clear to me when I get to it?

I know it’s going to be a really sh*tty day.
I know I’m avoiding thinking about it or making decisions about it, because I don’t want to face up to it.
And I also know it doesn’t really matter what I do, because it’s not going to make any difference; it won’t bring him back, and it won’t make it all suddenly better.
Yes, the first year of firsts will be over and done with. But that isn’t going to make me miss him any less, or love him any less, or suddenly heal me.

Maybe I should just take myself off on my own?
Maybe I can’t actually do it on my own?

So many questions, so few answers, and even less decisions.

6 days and counting

So this is the week that was always going to be.
And I have decided just to go with the flow through it.
T’aint nobody’s business but mine, after all.
There is no signposted path for this, there is no template, no map, and even if there were, one size never fits all.

So I may sleep too much, drink too much, stay up too late, wake up too late, write rubbish here, whatever…
I am doing what it feels like I need to do; whatever works for me. Whatever feels right, and whatever is going to get me through it.

Let’s face it, most of you have no clue what this feels like (and also, thankfully, don’t know how lucky you are).
If you do, you get it.
If you don’t, then there’s no way I can make you understand.
So, as with everything else, it is what it is.

This time last year we were so happy, and we were looking after, and out for, each other. We were in the middle of the most amazing couple of weeks.

And then…

Now I have to look after me, by myself, in my own way.
Judge how I do it if you want; and hey, I’m used to judgement by now, so knock yourself out, it won’t touch me. Judging me says more about you than it does about me. And as they say, those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter, don’t mind. If you’re not here helping me through it, being there for me, helping me to do it better, then you have f*ck all right to have an opinion on it as far as I’m concerned.

Walk a mile in my shoes…and then maybe you’ll get it. But I hope you’ll never have to. I wouldn’t wish this on even my worst enemy. But if you do end up here…then you’ll get it. And you’ll also learn that, even if it feels like walking over broken glass, you keep on walking, however slowly, because you have to. It has nothing to do with bravery.

Oddly, in a serendipitous sort of timing way, it would appear that this week I have some actually gardening to do, at precisely the same time as I have some metaphorical pruning to do.

Sooner or later you have to focus on, and look after, yourself. However much I wish he was, he’s not here to look after and support me anymore. I have lost my rock. The only person to look after me now is me, And as someone wise once said to me, if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem. And I’ve got enough problems right now without carrying extra ones with me… Hey, if you don’t care about me, why should I care about you?

Two years ago, this was us, out and about doing our thing, our way, in our little happy bubble. Look at those smiles. Man I miss feeling that way. So much love 😭💔.

Always this

I’m not sleeping.
I’m not getting enough done.
I’m just counting down the days.
I’ve given in and accepted that I’m going to be even worse than useless for a while.
It’s just going to be a particularly rough couple of weeks, and there’s no avoiding it.
Trying to just makes it worse.
And that’s just the way it is, and so…
I just keep breathing, and keep getting through one day after another, even though I find myself in tears all the time, even though I don’t know what to do with myself.
I just have to keep doing it. Own it. One day at a time. And so those days will pass, as all the days between then and now have done.

In the meantime this. Always. I will always carry you. When you left, you took a part of me with you, and you left a part of you with me. And you will always be a part of me, however life goes on, however things change or move on. And although we cannot be together, I know that I will carry you with me wherever I go until we can.

One day…

I can feel it coming in the air tonight

I really didn’t have it together this morning. I woke up, and I just couldn’t see any point to waking up. To doing today. I stayed asleep as long as I could. And once I was awake and up and downstairs, I tried. I did. But I just couldn’t stop the tears overflowing every time I opened my mouth to talk to anyone. Or even when I wasn’t talking at all. I just couldn’t figure out how to cope with the day, yet alone more days to come. And then Tash, in more than usually perceptive and sensitive mode said hey, look, if that’s how you’re feeling (which I pretty obviously was), let’s just have a sofa and movie and ice-cream day together. Which initially sounded daft. But I’m up to date with my work, and what still needed to be done could be done from the sofa. And so, minus the ice-cream, that’s what we did. We sat on the sofa together. We watched The Guardian, which I love and she hadn’t seen before. We watched a lot of Inkmaster, series whatever. And in the meantime I did what work had to be done. It worked, in so far as anything can right now. Some days I just can’t do, and it’s ok to not be ok, to not do them. I need to remember that. And so I’ve booked some time off work over the next couple of weeks and beyond, to try and give me space to cope. I want to go to the beach…but I don’t think I can yet. Not without him…

Later we went up to The Lamb for a pre-shopping get out of the house drink which turned into drinks with a government aided 50% off grazing platter food since neither of us were that hungry, and with Austin unexpectedly working, cooking for two didn’t appeal. It’s just as well it was subsidised, as it wasn’t great. At full price I’d have been kicking off. But ho hum. In the meantime we played chess (yes, we’re weird like that), we chatted some important things through, we even chatted to other people. But through it all I just felt her by my side, supporting me. Which is not something that comes naturally to her, but she was making an effort, and it made all the difference. I can’t tell you how much I appreciated it. She even told me I looked nice, which is so not true at the moment, but it was a lovely sentiment. All I can see when I look at me is the extra weight, and if I look at my face in the mirror, all I can see is how I’m feeling inside shining through the mask…and that’s hardly attractive. It’s all in the eyes…

That done, we then came home via the shop, and watched more Inkmaster, and then the next parental care shift came home, and we watched Criminal Minds whilst she went upstairs to read, until finally it was just me downstairs, with her upstairs reading, him upstairs getting ready for his interview tomorrow, and I finished the episode I was on, and now here I am upstairs in my turn, it’s time for bed, and another day has passed.

Ten more days until the day that marks a year. Those days are clearly going to be really really hard, as each one that gets closer to it seems to feel worse. And what the f*ck do you call it? It’s not what I think of as an anniversary – those are things to be celebrated right?. People out there call it all sorts of things. It’s their lost one’s heavenly birthday, their deathiversary, so many things, none of which make any sense. It’s hardly something to be celebrated unless, unlike me, you believe that he’s gone to a much better happier place. I wish I had the comfort and security of belief…but I don’t. So I have no name for it. Anniversary is the most dictionary appropriate term, so I guess that’s what it is. And I can feel it coming in the air tonight…like a storm gathering on the horizon, red sky in the morning, shepherd’s warning. You can run, but you can’t hide…

I miss him so much. There just aren’t the words. So here’s the song from Criminal Minds today that resonated tonight. I’m trying to still shine for him, but I’m doing a pretty lousy job of it at the moment. Now I’m off to try and find him in my dreams again…and then I’ll wake up to another day just to be alone again. How do I do this? He was my everything. One day at a time, that’s how. Same sh*t different day, and the days pass, and maybe one day I’ll know where I’m going. Right now I’m just holding on by the skin of my teeth…

Tomorrow is Thursday. I never could get the hang of Thursdays. A quote which quite possible only my Dad will get, but there you go, there it is. I am very grateful that I still have family; those I was born with, and those who have become family through circumstance. We are bonded by blood, or history, or shared experience, or through the fires we have walked through together, or whatever. F*ck knows how I’d be doing this without them. Without you all. Thank you. Two little words that I don’t use enough, but that I whole broken-heartedly mean.