Sunday, March 13, 2011

The new normal...

Dear Sara,

Has it really been a month since the funeral?! Some days seem so long, how can it have possibly been a month already?

My eyes have done a lot of “seeing” over the past month. I see things I never noticed before, maybe because I couldn’t. I see how much pain and suffering exists in our world. I’m so much more sensitive to all kinds of pain that I used to be blind to. There are so many hurting people out there.

Stevie seems to be adapting to you not being here. He doesn’t look for you as much anymore. He comes over and sits with me on the couch as soon as I pull the quilt up next to me.

I don’t cry as much as I did a few weeks ago. There are usually tears in my eyes, I can feel them there; they just don’t leak out. They sit there, on the edges, perpetually waiting to be called into action.

I find that grief can have time and situational dependencies. The parts of the day when we normally would have been apart go by faster. It’s probably part of the denial process, which can continue for a long time. This provides some emotional relief; but, as soon as I’m heading home, the fact that you’re not going to be there when I arrive settles in quickly.

The grief I feel during the time we normally would have spent together no longer feels like a unwelcome invader. Someone commented the other day that it would feel less “foreign” over time. This doesn’t make me feel any better about the way things are, but it doesn’t bother me as much as it used to either. Is it possible for grief to become something that just feels normal? I suppose maybe it can, at least for a season.

Today was both a really good day and a really hard day. I spent the day with friends. We went to Lansing and visited the Michigan Historical Museum. We went out for lunch. We went to Impression 5. We went to a high school musical. The busyness helped keep me from focusing on what we were doing four weeks ago, which was probably good. At the same time, so much of what we did was so family oriented, especially the visit to Impression 5, and it made me think of you and Miranda. Seeing all those happy families enjoying the museum, all its hands on activities, and each other’s company caused me to think about everything I’ll never get to experience with you. I suppose that’s going to happen a lot, isn’t it?

Just like Stevie, I’m getting used to you not being here. I still think about you all the time. I still hurt a lot. Your absence is still noticeable. But that’s all starting to feel normal; the new normal, where missing you is just a natural part of existing.

I love you. I miss you. Give Miranda a kiss from daddy.