Good Grief……..

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Alright, I’m not really sure there is such a thing as “good” grief… but I’ve been told how healthy it is for the girls to grieve their Dad…. in whatever way it comes out. I have waited for the “real” text book grief to begin….. and although I thought we had well and truly begun with Poppy, how wrong I could have been. Ruby has grieved like a teenager…… she is more likely to talk to instagram than me ( I have noticed some angry messages recently about her hating the hospital for overlooking Trent’s clots, which I had to remove for legal reasons. But her little Daddy quotes that she has found on the internet are heart breaking….) The last few months I have been feeling rather smothered by Pops, but having just turned eight I have also had to give her some leeway because she is extraordinarily anxious about me going out and not returning. Her Dad tucking her into bed one night and then dying so suddenly… I cannot imagine what that was like for a six and ten year old kid. I have taken her to a psychologist since September last year and we haven’t even touched on Trent yet….. the last seven months have literally been all about how to live with a sister with additional needs, that abuses and manipulates you daily. The poor kid has way too much on her plate. Not that Ruby doesn’t…. but damn it’s tough whichever way you look at it. Losing a Dad or a hubby in a normal, everyday neurotypical family I can only imagine would be ridiculously challenging…… but to lose one when one child has a disorder that prevents her from feeling her emotions in the way the rest of us do, and then one child who just like her Daddy is so deep and emotional anyway….. well it just adds to the difficulties I think. I am certainly not saying that things are harder for us than other families facing the same challenges, but it kind of means it’s even less predictable in how the getting through it will occur. A few months ago when the separation anxiety began, it was kind of nice to feel such love. Ruby has never been all that affectionate, so to have one child that is…. well it’s lovely. But it quickly became the desperate kind of affection that interrupts everything else that is going on around you… and then the night time visits became more frequent…. then when she was in my bed she’d remove the cushions I put down the middle of the bed so I wouldn’t wake her with my tossing and turning…. until the other day I asked her why she kept removing them, and she told me she was scared to have cushions between us because she couldn’t feel me next to her. I think if she could unzip my skin, she would climb inside me and never leave again. On Friday when she was told I’d be out Saturday night watching .hinge (the band that was releasing a CD the first night I ever met Trenton, and the same band that was playing the very first night we got together a year later….) she started fretting that I was leaving her.. so for that entire day and night and morning leading up, she wanted to know how many “movies” I’d be out for…. her way of keeping time. She either wanted Grandma to sleep with her, but in the end she decided on a slumber party with Swe Zin, (Mum and Dad’s Burmese exchange student) in the bungalow in Mum’s backyard….. I had a text at one thirty am from Swe Zin saying she was still counting on that goodnight kiss and couldn’t sleep until I was home safe and sound…….. So I jumped in a cab and was home within the hour. What a strange turn of events…. should have been me worrying about “her” out partying, not the other way around. Each Monday she asks daily what night Pop (my Dad) will come up to have them so I can enjoy a night out. She asks almost hourly, and also asks where I’ll go and what time I’ll be back and who I’m going with. This trip I have planned with one of my besties cannot be helping at all. In six weeks I am off to Europe and the UK for three and a half weeks…. something I need more than life itself, and something my parents actually want for me. My Mum suggested it shortly after Trenton died 20 months ago tomorrow. And I was going last year, but I feared that they would not be ready to cope just yet. What an idiot I was…. it’s only gotten much harder now. When I stared reading messages off the Young Widows Australia site at the beginning of my widowhood, I kept feeling like the negativity from the general Widow population seemed to prove it only got harder and harder. I thought “this is not the road I choose to take…. I have been a positive person my whole life…. this will not be us.” Well sometimes we don’t get to choose the road, the road chooses us. It has gotten harder and harder, and you feel emptier and emptier, and more lonely as time moves on. You do get better at not showing it however. It’s the kind of loneliness that no amount of alcohol, valium, deep and meaningful’s with friends or even trips to Europe or holidays will fill. It’s the realisation that the void in there will remain, no matter what else fulfillment comes your way. Maybe the last part of the grieving process is to accept the void, and know it’ll always remain. I’m not there yet though, so I’ll see. All I know is that two hours tonight was spent consoling a snotty, howling, punching everything she could get her hands on Poppy, which is most unusual for her……. and she wanted to go into my room and just cuddle Daddy like she always did when times were shit. She reminded me that she could sneak in at any time of the night or day when he was napping and she could shimmy her way into the bed without waking him and sleep until he woke to her in his arms. He adored it. So maybe he did semi wake but pretended to not, so she would keep doing it. He adored that kid. Her diary entries are becoming more angry…. she said the other day in her Daddy Diary, that she bets that anyone who ever lost anyone would probably want to punch baddies in the face. I think she’s right. I think a punching bag is in order…… the anxiety levels in this house are out of this world. She also said “I’ve had two birthdays without Daddy now….. he only knew me when I was six……that sucks.” God this is the hardest task I’ve ever been given to tackle….. how and when will life ever be okay again? x

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