You know- we have hit the one year mark of my husband’s passing. Thank you to all of you who reached out and sent cards, letters, gifts, food, and just said- i’m thinking of you. Honestly, i never knew what those things meant before this time. How impactful it can be to just reach out to someone in the smallest of ways. And we are not all called to reach out to everyone. I can pick a few people at a time and choose to bless them. I have a large space carved out in my budget to do this because it has blessed me so so much and i want to do that for others.

That wave of grief came crashing down on me again. And, you know what is so real, is that it’s almost impossible to talk about it at the time. It’s like that feeling where your head is split in half and you physically have this pain in there that pain pills do not take away… my heart aches and my bones are tired and i’m just tired. Very tired. I wake up tired in the morning and napping doesn’t seem to do the trick. Everywhere i go i have tears at the edge of my eyes and i want to cry it out but i can’t. It’s like this impossible place of heartache that i cannot will away. Nor would i want to, because those are the moments of the most clear memories and my mind is remembering in every moment during that time. I don’t think of anything just by itself -i’m always thinking two things. Whatever i am doing and Steve. Whatever i am saying wherever i am driving and Steve … it’s always two things at once and the memories part of my brain is dominating so everything else seems to take a back seat. My real life seems clouded over while the past seems sharper than ever. And then, just like it comes, it goes away again and with it the vivid memories.

This time i called grief what it was and purposefully just leaned into it really really hard. Not knowing when it would come back or when it would leave me alone so i decided to hold it. I sat. Alot. Gathered my children around me and we did puzzles and colored and horsed around. Jaxon, for the first time in his life, came up behind me and held me. With his arms around my neck. He grew up by 2 years the last few weeks and i am so proud of him. He will feel that responsibility to take care of us as he gets older and i’m thankful God made him to be and have the energy of 5 people cause he is gonna need it.

The thing that drives me nuts is that this is not going to go away. This grief. This life. My children. They are mine. I’m not losing them. Not ever. Just like Steve dying and leaving us for now, we still carry him with us everywhere we go. I don’t wish him back – i just wish that i could maybe go back and experience some things with him again. He was so full of life. I mean he was the life of our family. He fought an addiction, yes, but he was so much more than that. And he left a huge hole. Ginormous. But he lived his life so intentionally. He knew who he was when he was well and i could tell you a million things about him that made him Steve. And i would not have to think very hard. Things i see and hear around me everyday.

I’m watching a show right now… This Is Us. (I actually named the personal space of my blog post after this show.) I knew that it has been out there for a long time and i’ve been refusing to watch it because it’s so close to home for me. But i got brave and i can so easily imagine watching it with Steve. We would pick out the weak parts and cry at the sad parts and he would agree with me when the show depicted either of us and who we are and we would see ourselves in that little movie and i would agree with the show when the wife says, “Yes, he had an addiction, but that is not who he was. He was perfect.” He was a really attentive father and a really good husband, outside of all that rottenness. And when i feel grief in all its physical, primal pain, i think of him, and what he must have been feeling most of the time. His body craving something to fix it and make it better and i feel so connected to who he was. Thankful to God that it is temporary for me. Short weeks and months that i feel these things and then it disappears as if it was never there and i’m thankful for the scars. That brought me here, and i pray it keeps me humble and kind.