This past week I picked up the last of Kevin’s items from my parents home. Hockey bag, weight lifting equipment, his suit. The suit I debated burying him in. Tears welled up, but they didn’t fall. Emotion swelled, but I didn’t break. I felt like I was sorting through foreign items. Items with a vague familiarity, items that barely seemed part of my life.
I cleaned out his duffel bag, and found some things that were part of his single life, before me. An old paycheck stub from his job at UPS. Vitamins. A practically new Buck Knife and a guide to ‘Surviving the Manitoba Wilderness’. His life.
I am in my life. In a committed relationship. I am raising/helping to raise two pets. I have a career. My life has gotten to such a deeper, committed level than my life with Kevin. The only stability we had during our time together was with one other.
Now my commitment is with so many other things, and people. I miss Kevin. I can’t really say I miss my life – the instability of job, health, everything except us.
It’s amazing how far things come, how far I have come. I know that at 6 months, even a year out, I didn’t know this could happen. I didn’t know my life after his death could feel normal, happy, fulfilled, complete. I had no idea that possibilities were out there beyond my grief, that people would meet me and not know that I was a widow. I didn’t know that one day I would no longer be defined by my widowhood, defined by my life without Kevin.
It’s freeing, empowering, yes. But it’s also depressing, being so distanced from those intimate memories of our life together. I feel sad for the loss of that close grief. The passion I felt with his loss.