Friday, August 5, 2016

blue sweatshirt day

i am awake by 6 a.m., my dog Harley has let me know he is ready to eat breakfast. the house is cool especially for August. the temperature matches my mood. i am sad.

i choose the blue sweatshirt from one of many graceful bends in the wrought iron shelf that captures the clothes i will wear again before laundering. this one's hung here awhile, somewhere in the neighborhood of 55 days.

today is day 57.

i am very sad.

the blue sweatshirt is a well worn men's pull over hoodie, 3X tall, with a splotch of cotton candy pink paint on the left shoulder, and when i am honest i know that every day could be a blue sweatshirt day.

the man i loved for 31 years died unexpectedly 57 days ago. i am without my spouse, my friend, my lover ... the grumpa to my grandma, the dad to my mom, the husband to my wife, the man to my woman ... the person best suited to comfort me in life cannot be here to console me in grief.

every day is a challenge. i find it difficult to breathe.

i remember the day we cleaned out his closet. one of the mourners who came by that weekend commented that a dresser full of clothes remains following the death of her loved one. i snarl and turn away, sensing her condemnation, returning it with my own. day 2 or day 3 may be too soon, but within my stone-cold heart i hatefully speculate that 3668 days is way too many.

condemnation becomes a tennis match, volleys and drop shots.

only satan wins.

i pause my writing and laugh aloud now, thinking about the day i added pink paint to the blue sweatshirt. i had volunteered to paint a girl's bedroom in a close friend's home; my husband had been co-volunteered to loft her bed. i had optimistically estimated the painting and drying times, and as we began to loft the bed his shoulder touched a wall ... needless to say the paint was not dry.

it is not the misapplication of cotton candy pink that entices laughter now, it was what happened in the time that followed, a favorite memory of the two of us laying underneath the bed and arguing ... fighting about a next step. i hear another friend come up the steps intent on offering to help. he hears us fighting, senses the tension, and turns to walk back down the stairs without a word. good man. his arrival and departure invite me back from temporary insanity and i laugh with my husband at the foolishness of this fight.

it was a good day. a very good day.



Christina Rambo said...

Love to you, dear friend. Shedding tears for you. It is okay to feel sad. It is okay to clean out closets and drawers... it is okay not to. You can wear that sweatshirt every day or you can put it away. I am so glad you are writing through your grief. I feel honored to read your words.

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with Christina. Grieve deeply in your own way and treasure the unexpected laughter. I'm so happy you are writing; I hope you continue either here or in private. I pray for you every day and hope that some day we can meet somewhere in-between and talk. - Lori