During a business meeting today in regards to my husband’s recent death, I was stunned by the comment that a stranger directed at me. Through eyes glistening with tears, she said, “My heart aches for you and I’m so moved by your grace during this difficult time. It’s obvious that you are sad and grieving, but your composure is amazing.” Hmmm. I’ve heard a variation of this a few times over the last 26 days from family and friends, but hearing it from a stranger gave me pause. I can hear my husband’s voice in my ear, as if he were still lying beside me in our bed. “Girl, you’re one of the strongest people I’ve ever known. You don’t see it, but everybody else does.” Ironically, one of MrTDJ’s favorite Whitney Houston songs was, “I Didn’t Know My Own Strength”. That’s one of the songs that has been on repeat over the last couple of weeks.
I’ve been on an emotional rollercoaster that seems surreal and dizzying most days, but I suppose my internal struggles aren’t visible to the world. I feel as if my heart has been shattered into a trillion pieces and there’s no such repair kit available. I’ve always heard the term that everyone grieves differently, and now I actually understand what that means. As the minutes, hours, days and weeks begin to pass, the loss of my life partner has actually gotten harder. Since I’m an event planner by trade, my brain outvoted my heart and I put on my business hat to make it through the moments and days right after his death. I’ve not really allowed my deepest emotions to show because it’s been easier to focus on the “to do” actions.
Our love was strong, flaws and all. There are moments when I simply crave the perfect imperfections of my life prior to June 9. Allow me a few minutes to talk about my dear MrTDJ. Often in death, the deceased is unintentionally canonized into a model of perfection. Um, no. Not gonna happen here. No one walking this earth lives as such and I don’t seek any such illusions for my husband. My statement isn’t meant to color him in a negative light, rather to say that he was as imperfect a creature as any of us.
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