Friday, March 13, 2015

Arguing with time

I know, people say time heals all wounds. You would not believe how many times I have heard this since Kevin died. I don't know if that's true or not because I am damned close to a year without him and it still hurts like hell. It took me an hour to get out of bed this morning. I didn't want to face another day without him, another day of reminders, another day.

It seems as though a big part of grieving deeply and authentically includes a lot of arguing with time. I have all kinds of meaningful demarcations of time; each and every one is a reminder, many are also a blasphemy.

What do you mean he's been gone almost a year?

Sixty-nine days from diagnosis to death.

His birthday. Our anniversaries (we have at least two). The kids' birthdays. My birthday. 
New Year's
DiagnosisdatefirsttimehesaidhewassicklasttimehesmiledfirsttimeIcollapsedfirsttimehethrewuplasttimehesaid"iloveyou" and on and on and on....

I think about time a lot. I've written about it before both within grief and without. I struggle with it. These days it's a fight.

Every morning I wake up and it is a day further away from the last time I saw him, a day further from the last time we laughed, from the last time I touched his skin. What if I forget?

Each morning I wake up and it is a day further into this new life that I do not want but cannot reject. How can I manage to make today manageable, maybe even with spots of joy?

Each morning I wake up and decide that I will continue to try to move forward. I will continue to build a life where Kevin is my ever present, utterly beloved past. How can that not be a blasphemy?

Every morning I wake up. Every morning I have to remember that he is not here and face it again.

I argue with time a lot these days. I've long thought that many of our demarcations of time are arbitrary - weeks, months, hours, minutes are all constructs to help us measure out our days. But days, those are real. The solstice, the equinox, the turning of the earth around the sun, those are real. And that knowledge has helped me manage my own distress at the growing expanse of time between withKevin and without. Until now. In 15 days the planet will be in the same place relative to the sun that it was when he died. We will pass through related space. I cannot deny this time.

In some ways it is a comfort because this kind of thinking sends me back to the kind of science that helps, the reminders that we are all just energy of one form or another and energy cannot be created or destroyed, so Kevin energy is still around somewhere. Maybe when the earth is in the same place relative to the sun we will pass through that Kevin cloud and for a split second we will be together again.

Or maybe not.

In other ways it is a terrible weight, that knowledge that I will never again have before me any position of the earth around the sun within which he was not dead. Within which I was not without him.

Or maybe not.

I don't know.

All I know is my wounds are deep. My scars are visible in my face, my hair. I would not wish them away because they are born from love and loss; to wish them away is to deny the love as much as the loss. I don't know if these wounds will ever heal fully; truthfully I can't imagine them not continuing to weep from time to time.

(c) 2015 Laura S. Packer Creative Commons License


  1. I don't know if time heals all wounds either, or if it's even supposed to. I only know my experience - it's been over 5 years since my daughter died. It's still there, that wound. I don't think I'm ever not aware of it, but I carry it with a bit more ease and grace. Yes, it weeps from time to time. And I've found joy again. I don't know how it will be for you - it will unfold for you in you're own way, in your own "time". Sending love.

    1. thank you dear friend. I know I am healing and learning to find joy again. But right now it just hurts like hell.
      I'm so sorry for your own loss. Hugs.

  2. I hope you won't feel insulted if I think of my loss of my first beloved cat when you speak of Kevin. It was a loss that changed my life and opened chasms I had to traverse and left me with a fear of mortality that I managed to escape before then. And the loss of this beloved being who was closest to me of all mortals. The grief for her is still there for me, and its bundled up with the griefs of life, but there is also new love and joy. The guilt of moving on to joy and love is a space to move though. Be gentle with yourself. I wish you strength and love on your journey to get through the hard place you're climbing from and not wanting to climb from. Hugs and love,


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