Archive for April, 2010


Dear Darl, it’s April 30

60 days….

Ironically a not-so-bad Friday in a shitenhausen week that has seen me clinging for dear life to the edge of this gaping maw in front of me most of the time.  Of course I *did* cry twice already today (once in bed this morning and once on the train on the way to town).  But not total suckage that Fridays usually are.

That’s probably because of the good news I got today… my contract at school has been extended until the end of term and into term 3.  AND I get the impression that supply is there waiting for me to say “yep – I feel up to doing that”.

I went into town today to change over the house title – you must have been looking after me because the big scary sign at the titles office warned about incorrect form-filling-out and the non-refundable fee and my heart sank because I never passed form-filling-out 101 at uni…. and then my number was called and the guy behind the counter says ‘I know you’… it turns out that we went to primary school together and his Dad and my Mum taught together.  He fixed up the house titles stuff and then we had a chat about the old days.  He was a really nice guy – very kind and understanding of my situation.  This makes life just so much easier when people are kind!

Then I met Uncle K and we went to see the financial planner … and as it turns out, we should be OK in the long run.  He even suggested that I had no need to panic over money like I had been.  It was a huge relief to see what his model put up for getting through the next few years.  We’ll cope!  Hooray.

Of course then I sat on the train home thinking that I’d give up everything I had just to have you back.

We had dinner with Mum – she had picked up the kids from school and had them making pizzas for dinner.  They basically played happily together for the entire afternoon, so they had a fun day.  They are still playing a role-play game in K’s room (I know they should be asleep, but there’s no early start tomorrow).

Memory of the day….

we looked through some photos that Mum had and there was one of you and K at the beach where we holidayed each year.  She was only about 4 months old and you and she are just playing in the water.  It’s a gorgeous photo.  We never could indoctrinate you into my family’s love of fishing and surfing, but you did love splashing about with the kids and building your trademark ENORMOUS sand castles on the beach.  You would bring a shovel and have a 1m tall monster castle within minutes.  Last year, you built a pyramid castle in the morning and it was still there in the afternoon – you   were so thrilled to discover that a group of teenage boys had tried to replicate it and had protected the your original from potential castle crashers for the rest of the day. Those boys were quite cute with their determination to build a bigger pyramid … but they didn’t quite get the proportions right.  But I bet their folks were happy that they’d been so well occupied for the entire day!

You were magnificent and you were mine.

How I love you!

XA

59 days….

Life has been up and down for the past few days.  I swing between feeling in control and then weeping and sobbing.

I think the news that speed was not a factor came both as a huge relief, but also stirred up a lot of  “what-ifs” and feelings of anger.  More so, I am dwelling far too much on just how badly you were hurt.  I know it’s pointless and yet I go back there time and again.  Sometimes I wonder if I should find out exactly what your “multiple injuries” were as I don’t know if my imagination is more graphic … but then perhaps having an image that is real in my head would be worse – there’s no escaping the brutality of your death.

Strangely, knowing that you didn’t suffer is good – I know that dying and leaving us was your worst nightmare and knowing  you were leaving us would have been even more painful.  I know you would have fought to stay with us with all your might.

In other news, I’m now worried about H.  *I* think he’s a relatively normal, intelligent 5-year-old boy who cares deeply about his family and friends but that he is so sad that he is more angry and stubborn than normal.  This morning, he woke up angry and was looking for a fight.  I refused to fight him for at least 45 minutes before I cracked up and basically made him eat his breakfast and get ready for school – he NEVER used to so that.  Now tonight, he tells me that he was feeling really sad.  So it makes sense that he was angry.  I guess he is working out that none of us can change what’s happened no matter how much we want to.  Knowing that fact just sucks.

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Memory of the day:

our honeymoon to Tassie.  That was the most wonderful time in my life I think…..  Walking around the lake near Cradle Mountain stands out as one of the most wonderful days of our life together.   I remember it was freezing but we loved the *actual* snow everywhere and I discovered how difficult it was to walk on ice (you already knew, having lived in NZ for a few years before we met).  We had our photo taken together near the hut at the end of the circuit.  I know I felt how cold the water in the lake was …. brrrrr.

I also remember the restaurant we found on our first night in Hobart… it had a great mural of a 50s diner painted on the outside and the tables were made from engine parts.  The barman found out that we were on our honeymoon and the whole bar congratulated us: we were both so happy.  I also remember eating my (then miniscule) bodyweight in scallops and breaking out in an allergic skin reaction the next day.  You may have had more sense than me … but I think you also had an enormous basket of fried scallops for dinner… I think I also discovered apple cider that night and fell over on the way home (it took all of 1 cider to do that – I’m a cheap drunk).  You, ever the gentleman, helped me up and steadied me on our walk back to the motel.

You were gorgeous!

I loved you then and I’ll love you forever more

XA

Dear Darl, it’s April 28

58 days…

All the practical things are OK, but emotionally I’m a wreck.

I dreamed you came home last night.  You showed me where the scars on your face and neck had healed and you were well, but had to go somewhere and I couldn’t stop you.  You wouldn’t stay with me.

I woke up sad.

I was  sad and tired all day.

I think I’m coming down with the cold that the kids have had.  I had half a glass of wine with dinner and I’m about to fall asleep in my chair.

This sadness seems to be endless.  I know people think I’m strong for being able to get out of bed and get us all to school every day but sometimes I wonder if the lady who stayed in bed for the first three months had a better idea – grieve fully and deeply and then start to emerge instead of this endless sea of keeping life together but feeling like the world has ended.

I cry in the shower.  I cry in the car. I cry here at the computer.  I cry in church.  I cry when somebody is nice to me.

Memory of the day:

When K was about 2 and H was on the way, you turned two pine packing cases into the most gorgeous kid’s cubby house for K (&H).  It was a proper little house with windows and a door and a pitched roof with a chimney.  You used some old roofing iron to make it waterproof and built a little verandah at the front.  It was just beautiful and only cost us the nails and screws you used to put it together.

You had an awesome talent for turning shit into champagne.

I miss you babe

XA

Dear Darl, it’s April 27

57 days of hell.

Lost my shit again this afternoon.

I lost the original of my new will (found it now) and then the computer had another conniption fit and told me the network card was cactus.  Why does turning it off at the wall for 30 minutes fix this problem?  I just don’t understand.  As for the misplaced papers – this shit does my head in!  I think I’ve located them all now though…

I see the financial planner guy on Friday.  I don’t know what they can do really… I’ve itemized the living expenses as best I can.  I’ve added in extra to account for things I’ve underestimated or missed.  I hate doing this stuff.

K was sick today.  She’s got a cold but was feverish with a sore throat and sniffles and just looked pale and peaky.  She stayed at Mum and Dad’s today and slept for most of the time.  Hope she is OK tomorrow.

Memory of the day….

How thrilled you were with your Ned Kelly T-shirt I made for your last birthday…. you got to wear it once and I’m so glad you did.  I wasn’t sure that you’d think much of it as it really was just a t-shirt, but you insisted on wearing it to work on your birthday.  I was worried you’d die of heat exhaustion from wearing jeans with it and tried to get you to change to something cooler … but you reminded me that you work in a/c, unlike teaching which needs to be done in a sauna …. according to the State education department….

I took photos of you wearing the shirt with H at your side.  He idolizes you.

~~~

I can’t imagine a time when I’m not going to ache with missing you.

I’m so desperate for you to come home.

Every loud car or 4-stroke motorbike makes me look up.

But I know the V8 is in the shed and the motorbike is too.

I don’t know when this will ever seem real and not a nightmare that I just can’t wake up from.

I miss you

XA

Dear Darl, it’s April 26

56 days….

It was a public holiday today (in lieu of ANZAC day) and Jules came over to help me make sympathy thank you cards – a job I’ve been avoiding … but it was so nice sitting and chatting with her.  K&H were not well but amused themselves all day long.  J’s kids didn’t come so it was very peaceful (you know what I mean – 4 kids = chaos).

I couldn’t find “Believe” in big red letters … but it was written on a sign in a shop in big taupe letters.  Who knows, I may yet paint it red.  It’s a bit freaky how that word keeps following me around.

…and here’s the big thing…..

At ~ 5pm, I was skyping Mum and the actual phone rang.  I let it go to the machine as I am want to do … but when I heard it was a lady from the police, I picked it up.

It was good news (in as much as there is such a beast anymore).  She has almost completed to  the report to the coroner but wanted to tell me that, after reviewing all the evidence, it is her opinion that SPEED WAS NOT A FACTOR.  This is huge given that I’ve had complete fuckknuckles say “Ooooh yes I remember – I saw that accident  on the news … boy they must have been flying low”.

Well now I can say to them:  “*FUCK YOU ARSEHOLE*…  17 witnesses and nobody thought they were driving illegally in any way”.  Channel 7 will be the first on my FUA* list as those bastards were the ones to suggest “speed was possibly a factor”  on the news in the first place.

She also said that she was sure you didn’t suffer. Dear God but you must have been badly hurt for them to know you died instantly.  Apparently J was not so lucky and suffered terribly before succumbing.

She also said I could read the report if I wanted – but to have somebody there with me and looking after me for days afterwards.  She  was quite concerned that I’d see photos (not even of your body) that would distress me.

She was such a caring person…. somebody I’d be friends with if circumstances were different.

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Memory for the day….

That first trip to B&J’s holiday house at the dam.  Lots of cold showers for you!  You had a broken collarbone and couldn’t go motorbike riding and so you stayed with me all day.  We went out to the dam wall and played with the water pistol in the car (getting into trouble with a psychotic bloke in a 4wd who thought we were spitting out the car window.

That was the start of many many wonderful weekends with B&J at that fantastic house…..

I loved you then and I love you now

XXXA

*I will try and defer to abbreviated swearing where I can just to make you feel better.

Dear Darl, it’s April 25

55 days.

ANZAC day today.

Church this morning … and that word “believe” was in my face again.  I get it already! I’m going to put it up in big red letters so I don’t forget.

I think I’ve got the forms together for financial planning guy on Friday.  Can I tell you how much I *love* going over forms and finding information.  I re-jigged the living expenses form too.  It seems like so much to me, but after looking at a couple of sites where they put figured into mock estimates, we really did live on the smell of an oily rag.  Problem is, I know plenty of people who have to make do on less.

C back today – she had been to Melbourne helping out at the hospital care centre for O/S children awaiting reconstructive surgery (where Krishna and Trishna were).  You and she got the bulk of  the selflessness gene in your family.  She said P would come and build the verandah.  Maybe I’ll need to ask him to come after the money is more in order.  I guess those floorboards aren’t going to repair themselves though so it will have to be done sooner rather than later.

Sorry – I’m a bit flat tonight.  Eye leakage is back again.  Possibly also coming down with whatever lurgy the kids have picked up.  You know how I love colds. ….

Anyway, I owe you a memory:

You often told me and the kids the story of when you were a little boy and “Santa” had left some pressies in the sock tied to the end of your bed (I don’t imagine he left an awful lot of pressies at your house when you were a kid…).

Anyway, apparently you woke up in the middle of the night and could make out the word “bombs” on the little balls in the sock.  You were ecstatic to think Santa had left you a couple of bombs and spent the rest of the night dreaming of stuff you were going to blow up.  Seriously, you could have worked on the mythbusters show…

Apparently you were devastated when you woke up to find out that they were some sort of gob-stopper lolly and not explosives.

…and we wondered why H is the way he is!

You were (are) one in a million.  I know how long it took me to find you and we didn’t get anywhere near enought time together.  Life is unfair.

I love you.

XA

Dear Darl, it’s April 24

54 days.

Life is just …. wrong.

How the hell did we get here?  I just don’t understand how this happened.

It’s just wrong.

and I can’t make it right.

No matter what I do, I can’t fix it.

I miss you so much.

I’m shit-scared of spending the rest of my life without you.  I just don’t get how I’m supposed to do it.

People say words like:

strong

resilient

brave

doing well

coping.

But its complete crap – I don’t feel  any of those things.

I am very small.

and broken.

I don’t understand how my heart keeps beating when I know it’s torn in two.

I can’t see how I will ever be whole again.

I miss you.

I need you.

The kids need you.

Thankfully, they also need me.  It’s good to have a purpose.

and so I plod on…..

as I promised you I would.

All my love

XA

Dear Darl, it’s April 23

53 days, and another Friday.

For the record: Friday Nights Suck.  This should be “get takeaway on the way home and curl up in front of the tele” night.  Not “only day off in the week to squeeze in a zillion completely crap things that apparently NEED to be done since you died, in between taking kids to school with uniforms actually on  and lunches actually packed and all homework done”.

Today’s fun Friday activity was getting my Mirena replaced and claiming some of the eleventy thousand dollars spent on current health complaints BACK from medicare (thankfully I walked straight in and up to a really nice, efficient, caring medicare lady who just sorted it for me).  For the record, the first mirena insertion 5.5 years ago did not hurt, but since I’d just passed a 9lb 12oz boy out of that orifice 8 weeks previously, it’s not that surprising.  BUT when you have to have mirena#1 exerted and mirena #2 inserted after enduring the Ob/Gyn’s patented “frozen speculum torture”, the orifice isn’t quite so lax and getting the poor thing to open up again HURTS LIKE  A BASTARD.  Just so you know.

In other news,  I took the baby chicks back to school today.  If we can’t keep them, then I’m not volunteering to look after them for the next semester until the other teacher can get her act into gear and get the school’s coop made.  Besides, the big chooks were getting sick of the codling the baby chicks were receiving …. I could see it in their beady little eyes.

Also – whingeing to the local councillor about the fact that the mains tap on the footpath cannot be turned off by a human female  resulted in a man arriving at 7 o’clock this morning to fix the problem. He agreed that the tap was far too hard to turn off and he replaced the whole thing with a 1/4 turn tp that I can turn off – YAY! Our local councillor rocks!

~~~~~~~~~

Today’s memory comes courtesy of Bev from FNQ:  she rang tonight to see how we were and said she could just picture you leaning against the shed, cup of coffee or one of Al’s  “very small beers” in hand and one leg perched up on your knee like a lanky emu (typical pose).  You and Al worked so well as a team in that shed, inventing things, fixing things and generally having a lark. A&B were like surrogate parents as well as neighbours and friends…. they really loved you like a son I think.

I wish I had a photo of the two of you working in that shed.  There has to be some around the place somewhere… I’m sure the “tandem bike” effort would have rated a photo in those pre-digital-camera days.  Actually I really wish they were still our neighbours – I could really do with a Mr Fixit on call as blokes like you are few and far between.

Rare breed indeed.

Not only that, you picked ME!  How lucky was I?  Somebody as cool as you loved me.

You are awesome.

I love you.

XA

52 days…

A brief one tonight- I’m off to my course soon. It looks like it will be good … but I haven’t done my homework yet so I need to go catch up.
School was good today. The ANZAC service was sad and I shed a tear or two.
I saw the psych-lady again.  She thinks I’m resilient.  She thinks K has very intelligent both emotionally and intellectually.  We know this already.  She was worried about H though … she thought he was dominant and fidgety – on the ASD or ADHD spectrum further than I thought.  This didn’t fit with what I know of him.  I listened and thought … no, K can manipulate him just fine and isn’t dominated by him … but she’d never show that side of her in public.  Also – H had just spent 40 minutes in the waiting room before she ever met him.  When I remembered this, I pointed out that this was a loooooong time for a 5-year-old to wait and she agreed.  She’s sent me home with a sheet for me and his teacher to see where he sits in relation to his peers … and as I’m in that classroom twice a day, I get a good view of the kids – H is probably one of the more confident and intelligent kids … and Mrs McG told me as much about a week ago.  He does have anger issues, but frankly *I* have anger issues about this complete fuck-up in life.  *I* think the whole deal is not FUCKING fair.  (Yep, I swore again.  I’m that mad).

~~~~~~~~

I’m back.  The course was fantastic.  I really think it will help the kids and I deal with this.  “How to Talk So Kid’s Will Listen and Listen So Kid’s will Talk”.  Bad Hair.  Bad Acting.  Bad Props.  Brilliant Advice.

It’s not on next week as D is away, but there’s another 4 weeks to go and so far, it’s been useful for finding out how the kids are feeling and getting them to do stuff without going bat shit crazy first.

Memory of the day:

The hat.  The one we put on your coffin.  The one you found discarded by the side of the road when you were 20.  The one that had been run over and was really just a piece of felt held together with string.  The one you wore to all RY functions and other important events.  You loved that hat.  You saw it’s character.  Says a lot for how you saw people.

You have the kindest heart and most generous soul of anyone I’ve ever known.

I love you.

XA

51 days. You see how this works? It’s my memory for knowing how long I’ve been a widow.

School again today and I had most of the “problem children” in session after session.  BUT, despite me not getting much sleep last night (or maybe because I didn’t get much sleep) I was able to have 5, relatively calm learning-centred literacy sessions without any screaming or pushing (which happened in the Yr 5 group yesterday with a different teacher).  There was less of the “she is looking at me funny” / “nah nah ne nah nah” / “he touched my pencil” etc and more of the quiet talking, respectful LEARNING environment for the kids.  MOST of them even got the idea.

Amazing.

Of course it rained like it did for Noah and I was seriously glad to see a patch of blue sky this afternoon.  I think it’s been raining since Christmas … with the worst day obviously being March 1 when that bloody road was so slippery.  Hmm… “bloody road” … there’s my nightmare for tonight, right there.  I guess you’ve “seen” my dreams of late…. maybe I *should* have insisted on a viewing as at least then I’d know just how far from the truth my nightmares are….

Anyhoo .. shall try to forget that one before bed time….

Memory for tonight.  …

Living in FNQ and how you got a taste of non-working life for a year or so.  I was so worried about the fact that you’d given up your job to move to a job I got, but you made everything OK by telling me time and again how thankful you were for that short break from working life.  Not that you were ever idle.  We had a great time living in FNQ before we had the kids – lots of bushwalking, train spotting (remember the steam train that went up to  Herberton each month?), inventing, socialising and generally having fun.  We were so snug in our little house and we loved having visitors.  Remember the  Hypipamee crater ???  You always said that’s where you’d hide my body when you eventually did me in as it had wheelie-bin access right up to the edge. … Geez – where am I ever going to find anybody else with your sense of humour?????   I think we are the only two people who really “got” each other’s humour.

Ok darl, I’m signing off for today.  I love you beyond life.

XA