Tag Archives: grief

Hachiko

Hachiko, was an Akita dog that belonged to a professor at the University of Tokyo. Every day he would meet his master at Shibuya Station until one day in 1925 when the professor never returned. Unbeknownst to Hachiko, his master had suffered a fatal brain hemorrhage and would never come home again.

Over the years, I’ve heard the story of Hachiko and thought it was wonderful and heartbreaking at the same time.  The poor dog never understood why his human never returned . . . and spent his life waiting for him . . .

After Prince Charming died, I saw a real life example of the devotion that Hachiko showed for his human . . . Rocky never understood why Prince Charming never came home.  He sat at the door that first night waiting for the car to pull up in front of the house and Prince Charming to come and “rassle” with him.  When I finally went to bed that night, Rocky sat at the top of the stairs sure that Prince Charming would be home shortly and he didn’t want to miss him.  It shattered my already broken my heart.

It went on for a many weeks after the funeral, Rocky would walk through the house wondering where Prince Charming could be.  He’d sit at the front door, or outside at the gate, waiting for the car to pull up in front of the house.  He’d sit at the top of the stairs every night and rush down them first thing in the morning expecting to find Prince Charming at his seat at the kitchen table.  Every time it happened it shattered my already broken heart.

After a while, Rocky’s vigils got fewer and farther between.  I would find him occasionally sitting at the gate or at the front door just looking at nothing in particular.  Or sitting at the top of the stairs when I would say good night to him and tell him I’m going to bed.  Each time it happened it shattered my broken but somewhat healing heart . . .

Fast forward to this weekend . . . for some reason Rocky has started his vigil again.  And it’s breaking my broken but somewhat healing heart.

I guess I’ve gotten used to the hole in my heart and my life from where Prince Charming should be.  It’s usually when someone else tells me how much they miss him and the big hole in their heart and life his death has left that I totally fall to pieces.  But when Prince Charming’s beloved Rock Lobster (his nickname for Rocky) shows me that he misses Prince Charming, too, it turns me into a puddle of snot.  And I can’t really do that because it upsets Millie to see me cry so much . . . it’s just a damn vicious circle.

I think the people who told me that this gets easier over time lied to me.  This shit never gets any easier because it jumps out of left field and strangles the shit out of you.

 

 

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I Thought I Could Do This

Right after Prince Charming was killed, I wanted to stay in bed, under the covers, and wish the world would go away.  But . . . I had to work to keep a roof over my head, keep the dogs fed, keep the dogs healthy, keep paying the bills and keep up appearances that I was “okay” . . . even if I wasn’t.

The one year anniversary came around and, once again, I wanted to stay in bed, under the covers and wish the world would go away.  But I took a day off instead and did stuff that wouldn’t remind me of him or have me constantly remember the date (I wrote the the date a lot at my old job at the mental health place).  I had to keep up appearances that I was “okay” . . . even if I wasn’t.

The two year anniversary came around and, even though I wanted badly to wish the world away again, I had started a new job just shy of two weeks before the anniversary.  I couldn’t tell my new boss that I needed a day off to stay home with my head under the covers wishing the world away.  My co-worker was facing the loss of her father that particular week and I was “holding down the fort” and keeping up appearances that I was “okay” . . . and thinking that maybe I just might be okay.

Sometime after the two year anniversary I realized that the three year anniversary would be a bigger challenge . . . because the country would be celebrating a new president.  The anniversary date of Prince Charming’s death happens to be Inauguration Day.  Every four years the country will be having a big party on a day that broke my heart.

Over the past few weeks, here are some of the things I’ve heard . . .
On January 20, we will hit the ground running and . . .
When President Obama leaves office on January 20 . . .
Mrs. Trump will not be moving into the White House on January 20 . . .
When Mr. Trump takes office on January 20 . . .
Join us for coverage of the Inauguration on January 20 . . .
When the sentence running through my brain is . . .
Prince Charming, 51, of Springfield, Ohio, left us unexpectedly, Monday, January 20, 2014.
Yup.  You guessed it.  I want to stay in bed, under the covers, and wish the world would go away.  But I can’t.  I have to do my best to show that I’m “okay” . . .
Even when I’m not . . . and I’d really rather not play that game this year . . .

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Let’s Put On Big Girl Panties

I have a sensitivity to pictures of car crashes.  I think that it’s horrible that news websites post these kinds of pictures on their websites and their social media sites.  I’m very vocal about how difficult these pictures are for family members and loved ones of the victims to see.  I’m forever asking some news site or another to consider the feelings of those near and dear to the victims and to take down the picture.  Sadly they never do.

My comments often start interesting discussions with others about how they agree that the pictures are hurtful and serve no purpose.  There are discussions with others who think that I’m too sensitive and should just “not look” at the pictures.

Today was one of those days.  There was a fatal accident in the little town where Prince Charming and I grew up.  The local newspaper posted a picture of the car involved but said they wouldn’t identify the victims pending “notification of the next of kin.”

I posted my usual comment requesting that the picture be taken down.  I explained about Prince Charming’s accident and explained how thankful that the local news agencies where he died did not publish any pictures of his accident.  I asked that these grieving families be given the same consideration.

Let’s just say a discussion ensued . . . some people agreed with me . . . some people did not.  One young lady commented suggested that I “put on big girl panties” . . .

Oh honey you do not want to go down that path with me.  Not after I’ve suffered through the third Christmas without Prince Charming by my side.  Not when the anniversary of Prince Charming’s death is a mere two weeks away.  Oh hell to the no . . .

I wanted to say all of the things that you will read next but I remembered something I read about not arguing with idiots because they bring you down to their level and beat you with experience. This is what I wanted to say but didn’t because the person in question is very young, has no life experience, and has no idea what she’s talking about . . .

Dear Young Lady . . .

I put on big girl panties . . . when two troopers came to where I work and told me that the man I loved more than anything else in this world (and had loved for almost 40 years) was dead.

I put on big girl panties . . . when I had to tell his son, his brother, and his mother that he had been killed.

I put on big girl panties . . . when I had to try to explain to our two dogs why Daddy wasn’t ever coming home again.

I put on big girl panties . . . when I had to make arrangements for his funeral . . . and I had no idea what type of service he wanted.

I put on big girl panties . . . when I dealt with the vile, evil, hurtful things that his ex-wife and her daughter thought I “needed to know” about the “perfect man” that had been dead less than 24 hours.

I put on big girl panties . . . when I stood next to his closed casket for three hours while the seemingly never ending line of mourners told me how sorry they were for my loss, how wonderful he had been to them, how sad they were that they would never hear his laugh or see his smile again

I put on big girl panties . . . when I stood at the side of his grave and realized I had to let them put his body in the cold ground.  And I had to walk away and start a new life without him.

I put on big girl panties . . . when I dealt with OSHA, a wrongful death claim, a criminal case against the man that killed him, and settling his estate . . . all at the same time.

I put on big girl panties . . . every day single day that I have to live without him.

In the big scheme of things, a picture on a website probably isn’t that big of a deal.  But to a grieving person it is a huge deal.  It’s a reminder of what you’ve lost.  It’s a reminder of how much your life changed, through no fault of your own, in the blink of an eye.

And, sadly, there are more than a few people who don’t understand that.  They won’t understand that until they go through it themselves.  And we, the grieving, pray daily that nobody ever has to join this club that no one wants to be a part of.

 

 

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January 20, 2017

Is the third anniversary of the day Prince Charming left this Earth.

I’m doing better than I was a year ago looking at the second anniversary . . . certainly better than I was two years ago looking at the first anniversary.

This year the date has another meaning . . .

It’s the day Donald Trump is sworn in as President of the United States.

At some point I knew that this would happen . . . that the country will be celebrating a new beginning while I’m remembering the ending of something beautiful.

Now that the election is over, everyone is talking about Inauguration Day.

I’m not sure I’m ready to hear the date said aloud or ready to read the date in print.

I know that I’ve got this . . . but dang I’m not ready for this . . .

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Fall Back

I love fall.  I love the cooler temperatures.  I love watching the leaves change color.  I love Halloween.  I love Thanksgiving.

I don’t like the time change.  I don’t like that it’s dark when I go to work and when I get off work at night (okay, not now that I work at a school but every other job I ever had it was dark when I went home).  I don’t like that the dogs can’t comprehend the concept and their schedules (and mine) are off until they adjust.

The part about it getting dark earlier is what makes being alone so hard.  During the spring and the summer, I’m outside doing things a lot later and I don’t notice it as much.  During the fall and the winter, I’m inside earlier and it seems like the evenings drag on forever.  Yes, I have more time to work on my stitching or catching up on my reading or the TV shows I like . . . but it’s times like that when Prince Charming’s absence is (for lack of a better word) painful . . . We snuggled on the couch and watched TV.  He asked me questions about the cross stitch project I was working on.  We cooked dinner together and did the dishes together . . . now all stuff I do by myself now . . .

How many days until spring?

 

 

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Deja Freaking Vu

Today is Father’s Day . . .

My first Father’s Day without my Dad . . .

My third Father’s Day without Prince Charming . . .

For the first time in my life, I have no reason to celebrate today.  No one to buy a card for.  No one to buy presents for.   I sent a donation to Hospice in Dad’s name but it’s not the same as shopping for a present for him.

I stopped by the Big City Cemetery yesterday and left a USMC challenge coin for Dad.  I went to the Little Town Cemetery and had a beer with Prince Charming . . . and a Coke with Prince Charming’s Dad.

I went to dinner today with Older Sister, Her Hubby, and Mom to Dad’s favorite restaurant.  Older Sister and I had Meatloaf . . . and we all had Bread Pudding . . . in honor of Dad.

It wasn’t the same.  For the first time in many years I wasn’t making a meatloaf or bread pudding for Dad . . .

Fifteen years ago, I watched as then-Hubby struggled with what to do on the first Father’s Day after his Dad passed away.  I told him how sorry I was that he didn’t get to share that day with his Dad anymore and he could do whatever he wanted on that day to honor his Dad.  He decided to go fishing because that’s what they always did.  I had no idea how to help him with his pain.

Four years ago, I watched as Prince Charming struggled with his feelings on the First Father’s Day after his Dad passed away.  Again, I told him how sorry I was that he didn’t get to share that day with his Dad and told him he could do whatever he wanted that day to honor his Dad.  He decided to go with me to visit my Dad because his Dad taught him that family was the most important thing.  I was deeply touched by the gesture but still had no idea how to help him with his pain.

Here I am today, a little more than two years after we got the news that the “end was near” for Dad and his fight with kidney disease . . . and after having two “extra” Father’s Day’s with Dad . . . and I have no idea what I’m supposed to do today.  I did some yard work.  I took down a couple of things in the garage that I’ve always hated and wanted to get rid of.  I went to dinner with the family.  It was an okay day with some tears and some laughter . . . but there’s a big hole in the day . . . something is missing . . .

I have no idea to help myself with the pain.

Deja Freaking Vu all over again . . .

 

 

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His New Job

 

I swear that Prince Charming’s job in Heaven is either a songwriter or a muse to a song writer . . .

I can’t tell you how many times I heard him say a lot of thing things in this song.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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