I thought I knew what loss was…I have lost important people in my life. My grandmothers and grandfathers, my father, my aunt, my cousin…all important to me. Their lives were interwoven with mine in any number of ways.
I loved my maternal grandmother, dearly. She raised me and helped me to become the woman I am today. Whether that’s a good or bad thing is left for those who know me to ultimately judge, but on the whole, I think I turned out okay.
My cousin, Renee, died before her time. She was only 4 years older than me and I loved her like a sister. When she died, 11 years ago, I felt so lost. She was the person in my family, since my grandmother died, to whom I felt the closest connection. I thought I understood what grieving was when she died. I thought, because we had grown up together, that the depth of my loss could have been even more than that of her husband. I know they were married for many years, but I thought because we had grown up together and because my memories of her superseded his memories in the amount of time we spent together in this world, that the loss I felt ran deeper than his. I never said that to anyone and I never felt it diminished his loss in any way, shape, or form. I just thought that when you grow up with someone, you think you have more ties to that person and that, somehow, it translates to a deeper loss. I was so wrong.
I never took into account all the little things that go into a marriage. All the time one spends with their significant other. The constant togetherness that occurs when two people live together for any number of years. The fact that you go to sleep and wake up next to the same person, day in and day out, save for a few days here and there. The fact that you spend time throughout the day talking, texting, emailing that person, even if the messages are mundane. The fact that it is very likely that the person you’re married to, or living with, is also your best friend. The person in which you confide everything. The person you share your sorrows and your joys, long before you get around to telling everyone else. The person you begin bitching to about your day as soon as you walk in the door. The person who comforted you, without asking, when you woke up to in the middle of the night from a bad dream. The person who brought you your favorite bagel without you having to ask. The person who knew what they did to piss you off before you had to tell them and just apologized before you could bring it up. I did not take into account any of these things.
I lost my life partner, yes. I lost my lover, yes. But it wasn’t until recently that I realized my best friend was also gone. I talk to my dogs. I talk to myself. I talk to her pictures. I talk to my friends and I have one friend in particular that I write to and express my loss and sadness (thank you) but it’s just not the same.
The gift of being able to walk in the front door of your home and to see the person who “gets you” is one that is so necessary in life. And, until I met DJ, I had no idea how much I needed that in my life. And now, with her loss, I mourn the easy ability we had to just love each other. To be able to ask, “how was your day” and really want to know…to need to know. Just because you knew it would make their day better, somehow.
I enjoy reading and have blogged in the past about travel and books. My latest blog is a vanity blog. I write about whatever comes to mind, specifically, things I think I need in life. Hope you enjoy!