In the course I presented at safe social distance, we talked about the impact of shock on our lives. I make mistakes like sending emails to myself or searching for my glasses that are on my nose. I lose a paper and drive back home to make another copy, only to find the lost paper in the car. It is fifty two days after I found you dead.  I am still in shock and probably will be for a long time to come. There is no quick fix for death.  No reset button to push and then the pain is gone.  I still love you with the same intensity as when you were alive.  And I miss you like hell.

What am I shocked about?  I am shocked about your manner of death.  That you violated our no-suicide contract. That you broke our trust agreement. That there were no warning signs during that week.  Your Zoom consultation with your psychiatrist went well and we agreed that apart from missing gym, there were no symptoms of acute depression.  We talked with expectation about becoming grandparents.  I was not on red alert like I often was in the past.

What do I miss?  I miss our small islands of connection that were still left.  I miss you walking into the sitting room and asking me if I want a cup of coffee.  I miss my toothpaste love letter on my toothbrush. I miss cutting purple unions in fine rings when you were making us lunch.  I miss sharing a new insight that I had.  I miss listening to you playing your guitar. I miss my one minute hug:  sixty beautiful seconds of being in your arms.  I miss being kissed on my lips.  I miss the fact that I do not find the toilet seat in an upright position anymore, the silent indicator that I share the house with my husband. I miss the hope of a tomorrow with a better connection.  I miss having your body in your favourite chair behind your newspaper. I miss watching a movie with you and grabbing your hand when there is a tense moment.  I miss your occasional laughter when I succeeded in telling a joke that elicited a reaction.  I miss us.

What do I need to let go of?  I need to let go of trying to make sense of your illogical decision.  I need to let go of my dream that you will be restored to your former glory.  I need to let go of the dream that I will fill the place of work in your life.  I need to let go of the dream of growing old together.  I need to let go of my detailed action plans of keeping you alive.  I need to let go of our dream of being grandparents and seeing you hold your granddaughter and playing with her. 

What can I take back of all the things that I lost in our relationship?  I am taking back my value for connection  To find the emotional energy to embrace change and encourage others to do the same with whatever they are facing. I am taking back my calling to heal the brokenhearted and set the captives free. By engaging in my own process of grief and bereavement, I will grow in my compassion for others.  My mission is still to leave others better than I found them.  I can no longer do that with you.  Your share will now be redistributed to others.

Psalm 34:18 “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit”.

My God, I will hold on to You as you pour out the healing balm of Your presence over my broken heart and my crushed spirit.

Annette de la Porte

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