I am quickly entering into tiring times and keep seeing you out of the corner of my eyes every day. I sat in our bathroom crying late one night trying not to wake up Johnathan; I told you I needed a sign from you, I needed some of your strength; I said that I was sick of all this spring weather and sunshine…I need some rain, Josh…can you do that!? The next day it was so windy and rain was not in the forecast, but I was woken up by the familiar smell of desert rain, it’s my favorite. For the next two days as I struggled to stay asleep but I woke up to rain…I know it was you answering me, showing me that you’re still here…just when I need you the most.
A couple weeks ago I was flipping through the radio station as I was on my way to pick up Johnathan from school. I saw the song “Good Grief” by Bastille…I skipped right through it because I assumed the title meant something else…but the word “grief” struck me so I reluctantly went back and listened to it. I cried and laughed when I related to “you might to have excuse me, I’ve lost control of all my senses, all my words, get drunk call me a fool” – I mean who can ever explain what this pain is like better than that!? I’m surprised I haven’t been committed yet with what little senses I can display, my coping skills aren’t the best either….So I told Johnathan to listen carefully to the words. I told him, “Do you hear that? It makes you want to dance doesn’t it?” he said, “yeah”. “Johnathan listen to the words and what he’s saying…he’s talking about losing someone…someone died and he misses them”. Good grief. Though the song is about grief itself, it doesn’t mean that it has to be bad. No, grief isn’t bad. I told you that grief means I loved you that as much as I try to run away from it, it will eventually catch up to me. Every week that goes by I learn the hard way…I never take the time to sit here and be good with my grief…no I run, like always….you know me.
Grief hit me on Tuesday this week. Your brother and I went to NMSU to preview the video we filmed for the scholarship campaign and sign the last documents for the accounting department. I saw the video and felt a shock come over me. I couldn’t cry right there….not surrounded by strangers, I smiled and held it back. But that night I couldn’t help but think of the video, watching myself talk about you and who you were just made this all too real. I mean I talk about it all the time, but when I do I check out and have this out of body experience where I’m not really here or talking about your death. But seeing myself on video talk about it, watching the sadness in Johnathan’s eyes as he watched me made it sink in. That night was filled with nightmares that constantly woke me up, that’s when I told you I needed rain. I spent most of the next day numb trying to cover up swollen eyes with dark eyeshadows. But when that rain hit, I knew it was you. It was so cold, but Johnathan and I stood out on the patio anyway and just watched and smelled. We left the back door open while we played music and did some chores and tried to fold laundry. Then on came Bastille, Good Grief, we both jumped up and sang along with Bella. The next day Bella’s amazing second mama stopped me in the hallway and said, “Are you ok? No you’re not ok? Come here” she wrapped me tight in her arms and cried with me outside Bella’s class and said, “I know…I feel it too”. We talked about how overwhelmed we both are, how it all felt like it was too much and then to have to deal with real life still. Josh, you are putting the right people in my life to help me and tearing away the ones you know aren’t really here to help, thank you. She loved you so much, she loves our kids so much and I don’t know what I would do without her, on the days I don’t see Bella’s second mama I know she feels lonely and misses her too. When we got back to life, she was there waiting to just hug us…no questions, no judgment, just hug and cry as we played with Bella on the floor. We laughed and wiped away our tears before anyone saw us and went back to work. The moments that let me know yes, you’re still here. Not the way I want, not the way that I will never be ok with, but you’re here in your own way. Though I’m not ready to accept that, I thank you for the signs, for the comfort.
We are literally hours away from launching our statement fundraiser for your scholarship and I don’t think I can handle the anxiety much longer! So much work and thoughtfulness have gone into this from so many people that I am truly grateful. It is becoming bigger and bigger each week and we haven’t even launched yet. Donors are on standby which blows my mind! We all will have so much work for the next 45 days keeping up the energy and momentum that I’m doing my best to sit still, be with you, and trust your guidance as always, that whichever way this campaign ends you’ll know that I did my best, gave it my all, and won’t just stop there! Are in over our heads here? That’s something I ask you over and over in my mind, I’m terrified, I’m worried, I’m excited, I’m grateful and I’m still grieving. It’s such a confusing time with all these feelings rushing through me. I will continue to sit still, make time for grieving, and make time to stay connected to you….send more rain! I love you, I miss you, I want you home.