Monday, December 15, 2014

The holidays

  I've heard a statistic that the holidays of Thanksgiving through Christmas are statistically high for depression. It makes sense. It's a time of family gatherings and if you've lost any family or don't have close ties, it makes you sad. So many great people were lost to us this year. I had a high school friend who lost his son, another who lost her father. My sister in law's best friend lost her dad. Just recently, my niece lost her stepmom. She was a wife, and mother to a young boy. And the Flemings lost Bob. These people were all around last year for these days and now they're gone. Thanksgiving was hard for me. I felt so guilty for being with Bob's family. He should have been there. I love them all so much and being with them is one of the few things that makes me happy. But, my being there meant he wasn't. It was hard to shake. I mean, I've felt that way since his death. It should have been me. He was the better parent. He had so many people who loved him so much. Why was such a loved man taken? His family is so wonderful to me. They treat me better than my own. I'm so happy to be reconnected with them. But, I feel the guilt.
  I haven't really dealt with his passing fully. I feel like it isn't right to grieve in a weird way. We were still separated when he died. He had a girlfriend and a new life. My mind doesn't know where to file any of these feelings that I have. It hits me at odd times, most likely because it's very unresolved. I left the grocery store in tears one day because they were playing Toto's "Africa". Bob and Viggo used to love that song and sing it together.How silly is that? The hardest was the night before Viggo's Christmas program. I remembered how, every year, Bob and I would sit together. We'd laugh and joke and catch up with each other. Even though we separated, we stayed cordial and friendly. This was my first year without that. I would sit alone, cheering on our boy. I felt anger and grief all in one almost undefinable emotion. Once again, I felt it wasn't right that he was missing and I was there. It's just such bullshit. It doesn't make sense.
  The next morning, I sat in the packed auditorium. Beside me was an empty seat that, miraculously, never filled. Instead of sadness, I felt like he was there. When Viggo saw me in the crowd, a huge smile spread across his face. Of course, he was a total ham onstage. Neither of us felt the absence of his father. Instead, we felt the presence of each other.
  I don't think you ever heal from someone's death as much as you scar over.