I woke this morning with a blinding painful headache and my husband was there to help make sure it wasn’t my blood pressure. He brought me more medicine to help elevate the pain. It’s Wednesday, but I’ve already been difficult to love this week. I had a pretty manic meltdown Monday night and the devil was attacking my royally yesterday morning, but my husband has been amazing. So when I woke up at 3 am this morning in horrible pain I thought, “not today, today I need to be strong, today is the day we (or at least I) cry.”
When I met Matt and we began dating I had no clue how much I would personally morn over the loss of his first wife. My therapist has said countless times that I should not use “crazy” to describe my actions, but I think that it’s seriously crazy that I cry more eight years after Nicole’s passing then my husband does - not that he does not still morn - he just doesn’t cry. And, well, I am good at crying.
I am telling you never in a millions years did I think I would morn Nicole like she was my dearest friend, but my goodness I mourn her. I fight the guilt that I am here because someone is not. In some ways I morn as I do for James in that I am saddened by the “what could have been”. There have been many events over this last year that have made the “what could have been” sadness stronger.
Our the first year of being married after Nicole’s passing I was blindsided by what grief looked like from my husband. Honestly, I was angry and jealous, being newlyweds I was frustrated that he was not more present with our family. I was shocked at how badly he disconnected. Since that first year, I always prepare myself for what is to come the week after Thanksgiving. I have been known to ask for prayer for my husband stating, “because I lose him from now until after Christmas.” Matt’s grief has ebbed and flowed as the years have passed - some years seem harder than others, but it’s not his sadness that makes me cry. Well, it’s not always his sadness.
If you know me and we have discussed Nicole, at all, you know that I seriously cannot talk about her without crying. This past year I spent hours in conversation - good raw conversation - with another woman. I shared my story and talked through fears I faced without shedding a tear. And it was until we ended our conversation that my mother-in-law said, “You know Deb’s husband is the pastor of Nicole’s parent’s church.” I ugly cried all over that poor woman because I knew that she had a glimpse into Nicole and her family. She actually knew about me before we had met, she knew all about my littles and about Matt. I never imagined feeling the love that we receive from Nicole’s parents. My sadness is for them as well.
As I am writing this I feel like I need to gain the attitude that I have with thoughts of James’ passing: celebrate the time I had with him, the memories of his life in a positive way. Live in thanksgiving for the blessing of his life on mine.
Nicole gave Matt specific directions when knowing of her passing. I am telling you the woman was organized - I woman after my own heart with lists of things he needed to do, gifts he needed to pass to her friends and family and letters she wrote to her dear husband (y’all know I am balling right now). She told Matt that he was to take care of the schnauzers (Gus & Moby) which he did until their passing, lose weight (he was a little fluffier then) and get remarried.
From those directions I feel like I can honor her by loving my husband well especially during this time of year, not taking for granted an ounce of time together and living our life fully. At this moment in my headache induced loopiness that seems a bit of a big ask, but it’s the least I can do to honor Nicole.
So today I cry (I might cry tomorrow, or next Tuesday, too), my therapist would approve. She would probably say, “crying is normal, you are normal”. Today I cry because sometimes life just sucks. It just does and we really have no real explanation why we are to walk through these hard things in life, we just have to trust God’s plan…even when it sucks.
You must forgive me I just love this card by Emily McDowell and it’s so perfect for this.
and this one too.
Last year I wrote this post for Matt: http://www.danaraeblog.com/2016/11/my-dear-husband.html
Have to say, though, a good cry has made my headache go away! Yes, a positive spot on the day!!!!