Two weeks ago my therapist told me that it will probably be another two years before I really feel that I know who I am again. Before I know who I am without Tony, who I am as myself and not part of a couple and a writing team. That might sound depressing to some, but it actually cheered me up a bit. It’s not that the thought of two more years of deep grief is good news, but it IS affirmation that I’m not the only one who has gone through this. Not the only one who’s felt lost and alone and so sad that getting out of bed in the morning just seems like too much damn work.
The hits do, in fact, just keep coming. The one-year anniversary of Tony’s death was followed quickly by his sister’s birthday, his birthday, and now, Valentine’s Day. What’s funny is I’ve never been much of a fan of Valentine’s Day. It’s an invented holiday, and I truly did find it more romantic when Tony would do the dishes every night, even if he left the pots out on the stove – which drove me crazy – and didn’t scrub as hard as I would have. It meant something that he did it.
We did celebrate Valentine’s Day, though, because Tony cared about it. We exchanged cards and usually cooked a fancy dinner together at home. It was quiet because we really didn’t have the money to go out to dinner and I REALLY couldn’t stand the hearts-and-flowers over the top displays that would be part of such a celebration.
Last year my sadness on Valentine’s Day took me by surprise. Because of my lifelong apathy to the holiday, I thought that would override how much I missed Tony, or at least make it so that I didn’t miss him more that day than I did any other. It blindsided me. Somehow this year it’s managed to blindside me again. It’s like getting my period. I’ll find myself in horrible mood, hating everyone and everything and barely holding it together, and then it starts and I’m all, “OH.”
OH. Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. My husband is dead. I don’t like Valentine’s Day, and yet at the same time I am heartbroken and sad and angry AND apathetic. TOO MANY FEELS. I don’t begrudge anybody else their hearts and flowers and chocolates (well maybe the chocolates) but at the same time, I don’t want to hear about it either. I don’t think every kiss begins with a subpar mall jewelry store, I don’t think the only way to show someone you love them is to overspend on roses, and I wish I could venture out of the house without being assaulted by cornea-searing displays of pink and red.
In short, blah.