Fourteen months…….

Yup….. it’s been that long since I lay in my fella’s arms. Since I poked him in the ribs to make him turn over and stop snoring. Since I looked at his back while he read at night, and felt grateful to not be doing this life thing alone. It feels like ten years, and sometimes I wake up and it feels like ten minutes. Grief is a strange emotion I hadn’t encountered this strongly before. I howled when my childhood dachshund was about to be put down, as I knew where they were heading and they did not….. I howled for my best mate who at eighteen wrapped her car around a pole….. I howled for my Grandma who died a slow, painful death in a nursing home…. and I howled when a high school lover and friend committed suicide….. But still, nothing prepared me for the aftermath of losing a lover/best mate/husband/partner in crime/father of your kids all in one hit. Nothing. You don’t “move on.” You don’t “get better.” You don’t “come to terms…..” You just keep getting up and going through the motions. You allow the kids into your bed every other night “just cause.” You watch them go from sadness, to anger, to abuse (yup, usually towards me) and then back to complete silence about it all…… and hope that this won’t turn them to drugs in a couple of years…. or give them reason to not try, to go off the rails, to sleep around, to have shit relationships….. Jeez, I didn’t even need a reason to do most of those things myself. For three weeks leading up to Fathers day this year, Poppy turned into a tantrumous four year old again. If she didn’t get what she wanted she’d start crying, then howling, then throwing her body to the ground and smacking her fists down. It was a strange thing to watch…. and it took me a while to work out what was going on. She kept telling me that she didn’t know what was wrong with her, that she felt restless all the time….. that she thought she was going crazy in her head……. and the outbusts lasted hours. But as the days headed towards Fathers day, I found her in her room, looking through her “Daddy box” of photos and memories, crying at the picture of he and her at Luna Park that hangs on her wall…. and it all became very clear. Every ad on telly was for Fathers Day, every catalogue, every topic at school, in art, music, general class time. How excruciating. Gee it was tough enough trying to deflect at home. We decided to do the special invite only day at Healesville Sanctuary for members only. It was a great way to take the attention off for a few hours, then we showered my Dad with love back here afterwards, and because the girls adore him, it was just enough. But when I look back at how psychotic Ruby was in that time leading up, how emotional Poppy was…. and just how I hung on for dear life for it to all be over for five minutes in a row, I realise this is our life now. It will always be like this. Yes, it may become less common, less often….. but the depth of the despair will not shallow. It’s a tough thing facing a life in that way…. You may as well remove my heart and internal organs, I don’t feel them anyway. I will robotically tackle every day, and push through it because I have two special people kind of relying on it…. But I feel like the soul has been ripped out of me, and perhaps it’s buried in my memorial garden with it’s matching pair.

Fathers Day 2014

So it’s that time of year…… again. Second Father’s day without the girls having their Father. Shit. Crap. Fucked. No better words to describe it really. I wake to an email from Luna Park suggesting Fathers day there….. one of his and the girls favourite places to celebrate any event….. we went every year for Rubes birthday (including her tenth birthday where he was pushed around in a wheel chair all night because of his broken ankle and inability to walk on crutches because of the pain.) We also went to the annual Melbourne Demons family day where you got two hours of free rides before meeting the players. The funny thing is that I went every year when I was growing up too…. Trent and I both grew up adoring kids rides, scary rides, the clowns, the games, the dagwood dogs…. the cheesiness of the carnivals. It was our dream to take the kids to Disneyland, preferably in Paris. But a motorhome ride around America would’ve been just as cool. I did it…… when I was five or six my family and I did the motorhome thing around a little of the US. I always shared my amazing travelling experiences with him, not understanding how someone who adored travelling so much had travelled so little. I know he went to Uni, and I did not….. but I know it was something that he just figured he’d always do…. and he didn’t. God there are so many things like that, that I think about on a daily basis……… Would I be happy with what I’d done with my life if I died right now at 36? I know he adored his family, and adored the girls and I…. he would tell everyone we were his greatest achievement. But surely you are supposed to stick around and reap the benefits of creating something so magical? I cannot get my head around having someone here one day and completely and utterly gone the next. I feel like I’m in a movie…. because it doesn’t feel like anything real I’ve ever seen or heard of… apart from on the news. God I know that sounds so stupid, but until you have lost someone so close to you, someone that knew everything about you….. your every last thought, dream, hope, fear…… You can’t possibly understand how hollow you become. I will never again feel that security and comfort of thinking “I just got it right with him.” I can’t look on my wedding photos and smile…. I howl at the photos of him throwing the kids in the air as toddlers or babies.. I just can’t bare it…… So here we go again, groundhog day. Another few weeks lead up to yet another fucking celebration of a man we can’t celebrate anymore…..Not with him there to lavished with love and adoration, breakfast in bed and kid wrapped presents…. home made cards with ridiculously beautiful messages in them. I can celebrate our wonderful Dad’s, and the fact that he aspired to be like them as much as he could. I will and always will on his behalf…… but I dreamed of our grandkids giving us daggy pressies for Mothers and Fathers day fifty years from now. We’d have looked back and wondered how we’d done it, made it, survived it….. and adored it. Happy Fathers day Baby……. I wish you were here……