Thursday, February 21, 2013

Who Brings Baggage to a Funeral? This girl.

When my first grandparent, my mother's father, died in 2004, I was very pregnant with my youngest daughter. I brought my toddler with me to his funeral and my husband stayed at home.

Less than a year later, my mother's mother died. Again, I attended with my children. In that short period of time, I'd given birth and my marriage was struggling. I'd also found out that during my grandfather's funeral, when I was pregnant, my husband was out on a date with his lover.

Two years later, my father died. I'd been separated from my husband for nearly 2 years and was falling in love with someone else. We'd planned a weekend away, my new love and I, but I had to back out due to my father's funeral. The day I returned home from the funeral, he broke up with me.

The most ironic part of that story was that my ex-husband attended my father's funeral and stood by my side. He doesn't like when I cry, so that was hard for him, but he was there. Despite it all, he was there.

Well, let's just say that I was subconsciously carrying all of this baggage as I went into this week preparing for my grandfather's funeral. My father's mother had passed nearly 4 years ago, right when I was starting to date Gentleman Jack. I recall sitting at her funeral, surrounded by family, and feeling supported by him too. I was hoping he'd be there for me, a few days ago, when I laid my last remaining grandparent to rest... but it appeared his depression would take precedence over my need for support.

***

When I arrived at GJ's house the night before the funeral, it was obvious that I wasn't welcome. All of the little things he does to make sure I'm comfortable and spoiled... weren't done. He didn't even greet me. His kids did. He just said hi.

Ok, point taken. He's pissed. Well I was pissed too.

Over the course of the evening, he invited me to sit with him. He didn't want to talk, he expressly shared, but he did want me near him. By the time we went to bed, I was "near him" but still felt very far away.

My nerves were shot. I'd been shaking uncontrollably and not sleeping well for 3 days at that point. Apparently, I was shaking all night. I also woke up at 3:30 am (the witching hour for panic attacks, in my experience). I tried to be quiet about it but I couldn't stop crying. He finally reached out to me and pulled me into his arms. Once there, the shakes stopped and I was able to sleep.

The next morning, I wasn't even sure if he was planning to attend the funeral. When I finally asked, he said, "I am here to support you, all day if you need me. You tell me what you need."

THAT'S the man I wanted to see.

And he did. He stood by me all day. After the funeral, he sat with me while I cried, reminisced and missed my grandfather. He took me and my daughters to lunch. He napped with me. He hugged me over and over. He didn't want me to go home. He held me close and kissed me goodbye.

But he's still not with me 100%. I can just tell.

And I'm still very baffled at his fragility. The fact that it was only 2 hours that I refused to respond to him, out of my own desire for peace, and in that time, he was convinced I'd given up on him, that my love was gone, that he was worthless and doomed.

As much as I'd love to grab him by the shoulders and shake the sense into him, he isn't seeing any sense. As much as I'd love to knock him in the head and convince him that my love isn't that shallow, he isn't hearing it. As much as I'd love to be not nearly as violent as those last two sentences and show him his beauty, his value, his greatness, if he isn't feeling it, all that I'm doing is making him feel worse for not living up to what I see in him.

I cannot win.

Everyone that I've shared this with (which isn't many) have all said the same thing. Your wonderfully supportive comments, emails and texts, have all said the same thing.

Take care of me.

As soon as I can get life back to some sort of normal, I will do better. I will not be so shaky. I will not be so exhausted. I'm starting with little things.... like just listening when he speaks instead of arguing. Arguing with a depressed person is like arguing with a drunk person. They absolutely aren't seeing clearly.

I'm still unsure about anything except:

That man loves me, desperately.

I love him.

We make each other lighter, smile more, feel treasured.

And this is not him.

Other than that, time will tell. If I don't take care of me, time will tell sooner than later.

I appreciate thoughts and prayers. I love you all so much.

T

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