Archive for May, 2010


Dear Darl, it’s May 31

91 days….

Back at work today, and although I got blindsided by a letter from your employer and fell in a sobbing heap, today wasn’t so bad.  Something about working with kids calms me.  Even working with my most challenging “red group” for 2 hours this morning was good…. despite D patting every part of my body he could reach, R being inches away from a meltdown the whole time …. and a new girl thrown into the mix of beautiful that forms red group.

My Year 5 lessons were *bang on* and the kids really enjoyed themselves.  I love it when *my* lessons work out better than the prescribed lessons.

I finished at 1pm and actually got away from school at 1:05pm.  Unheard of!

And then I bought a new washing machine.
As you do.
I know you would have been yelling that the old one was fine as I parted with the cash….. but let me point out that while the Hoover has been an awesome machine (given that you found it dumped by the side of the road 10 years ago, and repaired it for the princely sum of $18)  it broke down often and leaked all over the floor quite frequently.  AND  if you recall the conversation we had on the morning of the accident, you were to come home and fix it again that evening.
In fact that when T drove me home to collect some clothes and toiletries that first night, I stupidly started sobbing over the washing machine and lamenting that you couldn’t fix it now.  So T set about fixing it for me (I swear you and he were twin separated at birth … and by a few years … but anyway…)  The upshot is that *I* can’t fix the leaky, belt-throwing thing anymore and every time it chucks a wobbly (and I do mean that literally). I break down in a sobbing heap whenever the stupid things breaks because it’s yet another sign that you aren’t *here* to fix stuff for me.  So…. I bought a new one.

Which brings me to the memory of the day….

How I used to joke that I only married you because a) you picked me and b) you could fix stuff.  Your sisters never got the joke , but you did.  It turned into a running joke whenever anything would break down.  You were my Mr Fixit!

Oh how we loved each other!  We really were connected on such a deep level.  Kindred spirits.

I love you, my Mr Fixit.

XA

90 days….

Life does not get better; it gets worse with each passing day.
Even though I am desperately trying to fill it with stuff to look forward to.
Even though I am trying to be happy in the small moments.
Life is fucked.

I yell at the kids because I’m sad.
I try to break life up by doing fun stuff but in the end,  I am still sad and angry and I yell and yell.  I don’t mean anything I say which makes it worse.

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Today started out OK – soccer presentation day this morning.
Cousin S and A came along and so did Mum.  Both K and H scored goals in their respective games and Cousin S noticed that they had both improved markedly since the last time he saw them play.
I met up with an old friend from uni who’s sons have been playing in K’s competition group the whole time but we only recognised each other on the final morning.  Typical.  She was sad to hear that you had died, and I know she meant it.

K&H are OK really.  They had a ball with Cousin S although H did show signs of his anger returning which is not good.  he has been really calm for the past month with few, if any angry outbursts.

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I wish I knew a psychic who could definitively say “Yes, G is with you and he says< this very specific thing that only you would say>”.  Then I might be more willing to believe that I’m not just interpreting things the way I want to interpret them.

I keep going back to the nightmare I had a month or two before you died … the one where I woke you up because I had just very vividly dreamed that you had been killed in a car accident.  I’d never had a dream like that before.  I wonder if it was more than a nightmare….  The feeling of overwhelming grief and loss is the same, just a pity that I can’t experience the utter relief it was to wake up and find you next to me.

…and I want so badly to wake up from this nightmare.

I miss you.

I love you.

XA

Dear Darl, it’s May 29

89 days…

and I’m exhausted.  I’m sick of this shit.  I hate it.

I’m sorry for whatever I did that pissed God off so much that he had to take you away.    God definitely sent me more grief than I can cope with.  That or he’s got Fuck All idea of what “coping” looks like and has confused it with “crazy”. Its only through sheer willpower that I haven’t driven us all off to the funny farm today.  Well, willpower and the fact that I don’t quite know where the funny farm is anyway.

I need a day of to myself with some peace and quiet, with no kids fighting or whining, no sister-in-laws phoning me for a “chat” at 7am or 10pm (WTF is with that???), with a clean house, laundry done and put away, no more forms or new people I have to send certified copies of the death certificate to ….  and with lots of rainbows and the odd unicorn shooting glitter out of its arse.

A hotline to Heaven wouldn’t go astray either as would a day where I don’t cry so much my eyes and face ache with the pain of tears.

I miss you so bad I have a permanent ache in my chest.
I can see how it is possible to die from a broken heart…

XA

88 days….

I was feeling a bit lighter today.
I took Mum out for the day and we had lunch.  Not a big thing in the wider scheme of the world, but refreshing to the soul nonetheless.

I’m still a bit slow with this &^*(ing cold…. but I managed 20 minuets on the treadmill at a moderate pace without coughing up a lung.

I did have a good cry this afternoon when Seachange came on (yes – you hated that show but you know it rates as my all time favourite TV series).  … it was because two old fogies were recommiting to their marriage and recited the poem  “As long as your eyes are blue” by Banjo Patterson….

Will you love me, sweet, when my hair is grey
And my cheeks shall have lost their hue?
When the charms of youth shall have passed away
Will your love as of old prove true?

“For the looks may change, and the heart may range
And the love be no longer fond;
Will you love with truth in the years of youth
And away to the years beyond?”

Oh, I love you, sweet, for your locks of brown
And the blush on your cheek that lies —
But I love you most for the kindly heart
That I see in your sweet blue eyes.

For the eyes are the signs of the soul within,
Of the heart that is leal and true,
And, my own sweetheart, I shall love you still,
Just as long as your eyes are blue.

For the locks may bleach, and the cheeks of peach
May be reft of their golden hue;
But, my own sweetheart, I shall love you still,
Just as long as your eyes are blue.

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I’m trying to convince myself that you are around me and that I’m not making up all the little signs I see.  Being a scientist as I am, this is no easy task ….. but then also as a scientist, I know not to discount new possibilities as so much “proof” is reliant on experimental design and measurement devices.

Some things are just not quantifiable.   … like the depth of a mother’s love …. or a widow’s grief.

I will always love you, old blue eyes

XA

Dear Darl, it’s May 27

87 days…

and a long day at that.

But I am feeling positive with a plan for at least the next few weeks at school.  Today was spent in meetings with the literacy coach who had some brilliant ideas and plans and who calls a spade a spade.  This lady knows what she is doing and doesn’t take crap from teachers who pull the “I don’t need to learn anything new” line … in the nicest possible way.  It was interesting to see the older, more set-in-their-ways teachers be uncomfortable and unwilling to accept that, like it or not, funding follows results and they need to show some positive change in their classrooms.  Luckily, the mere fact that the kids a will be 6 months older when they sit the next test that links directly to funding will almost ensure a higher result.  I got brownie points for pointing out that the kids were in fact sitting on the average for the year below their current grade, but given that the test was done in the first few weeks of school, you’d expect that.  Hopefully by the end of the year, the kids will be sitting on the average for their current grade, thus justifying the money spent on emplying me!

I saw the psychologist this afternoon too – it’s just refreshing to talk to someone who doesnt’ try and placate or dismiss my feelings, but acknowledges them and gives me tools for handling them.

Then on to Mum and Dad’s for dinner before the final night of the behaviour management course I’m doing at school.  It’s been a useful course and I am getting a lot out of it.  It’s also nice to catch up with C from GG as she has been coming to the course.

Which brings me to the memory of the day (or at the rate I’m going, it is more truthfully the memory of the week)…..

One of the parents at the course was talking about listening to Greenbottle on the radio (she’s an older parent).  I was the only person in the room who knew what she meant and she was stoked that we had some episodes on CD.

You used to listen to it in the dairy when you were a kid, as your mother did when she was a girl (apparently it was so funny, it was often repeated on radio).

The kids and I remember the last few trips to the farm where you’d play episodes of Greenbottle to us all on the way there.  I think you also played a few episodes for us on the way over to K & S’s at Christmas time.

Personally, I just loved the fact that  you got a kick out of such ridiculous humour.  You and I were so well suited on funny.  We got stuff that nobody else did and I really miss that…

I miss you so much.

I love you even more

XA

86 days….

Feeling more on top of life today than yesterday… but it still sucks.

K was really sad today – she was at the library and was so sad that they had to call me out of my classroom to come and be with her.  She sat on my lap for half an hour while the librarian took the class and we managed to get her involved in the story.  Poor little thing misses you terribly and it seems she is getting worse.

H spent a long time with the guidance counsellor at school today – I imagine I’ll find out more on that later in the week.
Both of them are really angry that it had to be *you* that died and I admit, I am also rather cheesed off about that.  Seriously *why* us???  As far as I can tell, we are all reasonably kind, caring, helpful, friendly, loving individuals and when the kids ask why God took you and not that lunatic that lives 3 doors down from Mum and Dad’s I’ve got no answer.

But I am thankful for small things.
Like becoming closer to J.  She and I have known each other since we were 11, and yet we are closer now than ever.  She can see through my brave face.
She sends me an e-mail Every Single Day full of light and laughter.  She makes me meals and brings them to me.  And she is funny.  I laugh so hard at the things she says and how she can stare out an oncoming shit-storm and laugh about it later….

Most of all, she understands how hard this is for us every single day.  Never once has she forgotten that it’s ultimately ME that can’t get away from this grief.  Everything I do, every minute of every day, I can’t escape it. Not  when I wake up, not at the breakfast table, not as we leave for school, or even the fact that I[‘m only working at this school since you died, not at dinner time, not curled up on the couch and certainly not when I will go and climb into our cold lonely bed in a few minutes.

This grief is everywhere I turn and I can’t get away from it.

I miss you.

I love you.

XA

Dear Darl, it’s May 25

85 days…
…and the bottom feels like it fell out of the world.

I am sick and tired and apathetic and life feels empty and pointless.

When I drive home from work with the kids, I feel like there’s nothing to look forward to.  I’m trying desperately to put things in there to look forward to, even just a little bit, but in the end, there’s no Daddy coming home for tea…. or in today’s case, no *you* to cook tea for me when I’m feeling so ratty.

I wonder how I will get through the rest of my life: all the things I can’t do, or don’t want to do anymore without you.

Never fear – I’m not planning anything other than another doona day.
I realise I’m sick and life always seems worse when you are sick.

It doesn’t stop this whole thing from sucking beyond the telling of it.

In the end, the kids were hungry so I reheated some stew, toasted some bread and we ate the same food for the thrid night in a row.  I just didn’t have the energy for anything else.

I really miss how you’d come home on days like this, quickly work out that my energy was gone and just step into the breach.  Especially today when the kids fought from dawn and continued after school,  and didn’t so a single thing I asked them to until I yelled at them and my throat got hoarser and made me feel even crapper.

I’ll be OK – I just miss you.

I love you.

XA

84 days…

Some days life just sucks and other days it shits all over you.

Mum rang last night to say that Pete has Ross River Fever.
Fan-bloody-tastic.
Our lives just keep getting shit upon.

I didn’t sleep well between thinking about Pete, thinking about you,  sneezing, wheezing and trying to lie so my back didn’t hurt.
I woke up feeling Very Average, and did the unthinkable and called in sick – no mean feat when I had  to go to school anyway to take the kids.
In getting to school, I drove over a pothole and scraped the skirt on the car.

Not happy.

On the plus side, I managed to go to the chiropractor who at least fixed my neck and back enough to let me walk properly (did I tell you I ended up with a stiff shoulder at soccer yesterday).    When I came home, I felt up to doing a load of laundry when….. the phone rings to say K is in sick bay and feeling unwell.  …and I’ve heard that there is a vomiting bug doing the rounds of the school.  So I get myself back to school, decide to get both kids because I sure as hell won’t be making a third trip to school today.

So we are all home at 1pm and after I make 3 beds, we are ALL having Nana Naps.

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Every time I think we are at rock bottom, the floor gives way and there is a whole new level of hell beneath.
I like to think of myself as an optimist, but after 5 years of varying levels of hell, I am becoming a glass-half-empty type.  Maybe if I expect the worst each day, I’ll be OK with just the regular amount of crap I have to deal with.

I miss you.  You’d know what to do to fix everything.

I love you

XA

Dear Darl, it’s May 23

83 days….
I really wish people would stop asking me if I am OK.
I know they are only trying to be polite, but they force me to lie every single time and say “I’m OK” when it’s patently obvious that I’m not.  I know they don’t want the truth.
Ironically, the people closest to me know I’m not OK but can tell when I’m having a really bad day and just check on the degree of sadness I’m at for the day or just ask “how are you?” and aren’t afraid to hear the reply.

Or see the tears.

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I took the kids to soccer again this morning.  Next week is presentation week and they all get trophies for participation.  I think.  It’s a nice idea that participation is the aim, rather than winning and losing.
Some of the parents do my head in though … these are little kids just running round, kicking a ball vaguely towards their end, there’s no off-side, no goalie, just fun.  But today I’ve heard:

“if you don’t beat your cousin, you are out of the family”
“remember J, it’s a dollar for every goal you kick”
“you’ll never make the World Cup team if you play like that”
“you cheated you little bugger”

What is wrong with these people????  Some parents suck. They put me off sport.
At least the organisers go to great pains to encourage all the kids to play, don’t keep score and really just focus on fun and friendship for the kids.

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As I was driving home, I saw a bit of rope by the side of the road.  I nearly stopped to pick it up and decided that I must have been channeling YOU.  *I* don’t scavenge road-side garbage – that’s entirely your thing.  Mind you, you’ve come home with some rippers in the past – like the enormous Christmas tree, and the bikes.  Not to mention all the tools you’ve found.
You were such a magpie!

Love you Buddy Roo

XA

82 days….

That cold that has been threatening to come for the last month has me tired again.  More lime toddies and vicks neck rubs.  I’m holding my own … I can’t get sick now.  Not that you were ever particularly sympathetic when I had a cold … I remember making you stay home and look after the kids one day EVER.

I took the kids over to see Bs this afternoon.  The other H had two boys already there that I teach. One of them threw his arms around me as soon as he saw me… and it turns out the other child’s mother is one of the prep teachers and they live in that new big white house just around the corner.  Small world.

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Was that you tonight?  With the “Believe” immediately followed by the picture of the rainbow that H drew?  (In the right colour order too I might add – I taught him well.) Remember  ROYGBIV ?

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I watched a movie on  tv tonight – “Must Love Dogs”.  The father (Christopher Plummer)  says a line in the movie …..

But it’s different for me, I’ve had the love of my life, and no one else could ever touch that, no one can come close.  So I’m just out there passing the time, tap-dancing.  If you want the truth… maybe if l dance fast enough, l won’t remember what I’ve lost, you see?

So it’s just me here, tap-dancing, wondering how the hell I get through the rest of my life without the love of my life with me….

Love you forever

XA