Today starts year 4 of my reinvented life. Today, August 31, marks the 3rd anniversary of Rick’s death. I’ve thought a lot about our life together and where I had expected to be. A week earlier was what would have been our 10th wedding anniversary. I spent that day with a severely ill family member, on what may well be my last visit. Had Rick lived, he would have been with me. We would have extended that sad trip into a vacation, adding some joy to the sorrow.
We traveled well, his calmness in the face of anything combining with my planning and organizational skills. I miss those vacations; the GPS voice helps me to stay on track, but she’s not nearly as much fun.
“I’ll have to reinvent myself” said my friend, as we talked about the impact of that serious illness. “I’ve done it before, and I’ll just have to do it again” she said. Reinventing myself; that’s what I’ve been doing the last 3 years.
Three years out, things are different. It’s a quiet, personal remembrance. It feels muted. The minutes tick by at work and I remember: this is the time when I got the final news, this is when I went in to say goodbye, it was at this very moment that he died. So much has faded, as I knew it would. Tonight I will go back and read what I wrote as it was all happening, and I’ll feel the immediacy in a way I can’t anymore. It’s a memory, now. It’s in the past.
I have reinvented myself, mostly. But I still remember, and I still care, and I still grieve.