May 31

I’m not sure that I have much to say at the moment (just wrote a long journal entry), but today is one year since I had to take Matt to the ER for the first time. I caught myself trying to avoid thinking about it after work, so I made myself sit down with my journal and write about the day. I think I feel better now; at least I feel like I’m not suppressing anyway.

I read over a journal entry from a year ago too, after I was finished writing. The old journal entry is what really got me crying, because I was talking about how horrible I imagined losing a husband would be. I said that I don’t know how people deal with that kind of grief.

It’s been a fucked up year, people. I know, it could have been worse. There were some happy months in there – for me anyway. But overall, it was extremely stressful and expensive and scary and disheartening and painful. I had so much hope through all of it too – I wish I could have shared that with Matt somehow.

Anyway. I’m not looking forward to Matt’s birthday.

bedroom, 14 weeks in

I know I keep talking about my bedroom…and I finally finished it yesterday! I’ll probably put up some art and maybe some different curtains (I’m thinking blue), but overall everything is done! I LOVE the comforter. I slept there last night – not the first time alone, but the first time alone with no one else in the house either.

blog - bed 3

blog - bed

blog - bed 2

Oh pretty!! I know the canopy seems a little over the top, but it’s my bedroom after all.

Also, today is 14 weeks. These little numbers make it seem like hardly any time has passed. Even saying “three and one half months” doesn’t sound like a long time. It feels like FOREVER since I saw Matt though. February feels like it was a different lifetime.

EDIT: I’m going to have to start buying lint rollers at Costco as – after only one night – the white linen is already covered in black cat hair. I don’t know what I was thinking…except that white linen is so gorgeous.


This is what “normal” is going to look like for a while. I just realized this last night, and it made me sad. Anna Laura gave me a book by Marie Howe called This Is What the Living Do, and that phrase keeps popping into my head. This is what the living do – go to work in the morning, mow the lawn, unclog the drain, drink coffee, try to have friends, feed the cats, renew the car’s tags.

I also realized last night that the only constant in my life – so far as people and things go – is ME. It’s silly to become too attached or dependent on people or things because I am not able to control them. People might tell you that they’re going to be there for you, but they can’t guarantee that. The only person who is guaranteed to be around as long as I am…is me. That makes me feel lonely, but also reminds me that I am alive. I ought to be open to letting life flow through me like a river; I would like to be able to enjoy everything I’m able to, but let go when I need to. It’s going to be a process.

On an unrelated note, I put up my faux canopy last night. The rest of my bed frame is being delivered today, so I should be able to get the bedroom all nice and wrapped up tonight. I have new sheets, a new comforter and duvet cover set, and a new mattress pad – all of which are still unopened because I’ve been waiting to get the rest of my bed. Once I get that set up, all I’ll need to do is move the box of Matt’s clothes and do some general organization/straightening up. I have some bookshelves to fill but that has never been a problem at all. 🙂 I would almost like to just spend the rest of the week in bed, reading books or drawing. I would like it so much more if Matt was around, but he isn’t and never will be again.

I watched I Heart Huckabees last night while putting up the canopy, and it was – as always – excellent. So many things used to have so much less meaning than they do now. It’s like I have been opened up to a new level of LIFE that I never understood or really even recognized before – but I recognize it all over the place now. The inevitability of human drama, for example! When Katerine talks about how unfair life is, and how something will inevitably happen to screw things up, it resonates so much more than before. I’m more thankful than ever for the Jaffe characters too, since they offer a sort of hope out of Katerine’s hopelessness.


Thirteen weeks now

Yesterday was my last counselling appointment unless I decide to call to make another one sometime in the future. I have no more scheduled, though. She thinks I’m continuing to do “great,” and she didn’t seem to think that I needed any more sessions. I agree with her, but I’m glad she said it too.

So I did not do any yoga yesterday. I know, I know – whatever. I DID clear out some of Matt’s clothes. I packed the ones that I’m keeping into a laundry basket, put the rest into a box, and moved his shelf into the garage. It was not fun. Every single piece of clothing is full of memories. All his tee shirts…the bunny one, the Vonnegut one, the blue McCullough one, each plain white one, the brick-colored athletic fit shirt that made him self conscious but I thought looked great…each one, so many memories. I don’t know why I wasn’t expecting to cry that much. I’ve walked by that shelf every day, I’ve cried into the shirts before; I hadn’t taken each out out and looked at them though. It was such a flood of memories and emotions. Awful. Just awful. I want to ask Matt so many questions… but honestly, I think I have all the answers that he could give me anyway. He didn’t mean to hurt me this badly. He made it as clear as he could that this was not about me and that he loved me dearly — even though when I feel everything, it feels ALL about me. I know it wasn’t though. I try to be understanding and empathetic, though I still get mad at Matt on occasion.

Anyway. Whether I like it or not, I’m healing.

Funny thing though. After doing all that yesterday, plus some miscellaneous bedroom organization, I had a decent evening and feel pretty decent today too. I stayed in all evening alone, took a shower, watched some TV, read a little, used the computer, and drifted off easily. I woke up feeling pretty rested this morning and work has been fine so far. I’m looking forward to the weekend too; Arrested Development comes out Sunday and I’m going to have a few people over to watch that I think. I’m off on Memorial Day so I can re-watch the 4th season 🙂 and work on my bedroom – assuming everything has shipped by then. Not sure what I’ll be doing on Saturday, but if nothing gets planned then I might think about getting a pedicure and/or hair cut. My hair is getting pretty long, and I’ve wanted a pedi for about 3 months now….

So much of life is bittersweet. I had an idea of this before meeting Matt, then my life became predominately sweet for the next 5 years, and now it’s more bittersweet than ever. There are worse things, I know. At least it isn’t all bitter anymore. This is something that I’m going to have to get used to again though. I always felt like depth of any kind of emotion opens you up to being able to feel other emotions deeply too, so there are good things I suppose. It’s all the Tao anyway.

Remember 3 months ago today? What a terrible, awful day it was – and I can’t even remember it that clearly. Funny, I remember the 21st much more clearly than any of the subsequent days. I even remember everything I was wearing except my shirt. Pink coat, grey pants, pink heels. Standing outside of the psych hospital, chatting with the Vandy cop while we waited for the Metro cop to arrive, knowing in the back of my mind that my husband was almost definitely dead by now. It was a chilly day. The Vandy cop was extremely nice. I think his name was Kody maybe?

My weeks are becoming more “normal.” This is not in comparison to my life before Matt died, but rather to my life since then. Of course, this doesn’t mean I like it or anything, but I’m thankful that I’m not as bad off as I was three months ago. Or two months ago, or even one month ago.

I have a counselling appointment this afternoon, and it might be my last one (it’s the last free one anyway). We’ll see how it goes.

I’ve given myself a D- in working out lately, and this afternoon after work I think I’m going to work on that some – even if it’s just doing some yoga. Showering after a workout is one of the most gratifying feelings, I will say. I need to get into better shape. It’s easy to want to exercise when I’m in a good mood and feeling happy, but it’s almost impossible for me to persuade myself to do it when I don’t feel good.

Anyway. I don’t have much more to say…I mostly wanted to state that I’m going to do some yoga when I get home from work today, because saying it “out loud” so to speak seems to help me actually do it.

Saturday morning

I’m brainstorming bedroom makeover options. I’m kinda excited about re-doing the room, honestly. Not excited about sleeping in my bed alone, but at least it will be comfortable and pretty. 🙂 I’ll adjust, and still sleep on the couch some anyway.

So the headboard I bought is upholstered in dark grey linen and has brass accents. I also got a white linen duvet cover with pillowcases which is going to be gorgeous! I’m thinking that I’m going to hang curtain rods from the ceiling to make it a mock-canopy bed, using those sheer curtains from Ikea. With some brightly-colored sheets and maybe a pretty pillow or something, I bet it’ll look great. Unfortunately I’m not allowed to paint in there, but might look into getting a cool wall decal (like tree branches or something). Or just some new artwork.

I haven’t decided how to arrange the furniture yet. There are only a few places that the bed could easily, so I might just leave it where it is now, but move the dresser and put all three bookshelves along the far wall. We’ll see. I need help moving the dresser so I can’t do anything with it right now anyway.

I’ve been thinking about getting some new curtains for in there, too. Possibly a rug if I could find a nice cheap one.

I’m up early because I drove Ryan to Dickson this morning. The drive made me miss Matt, of course. I’m finding that overall, it’s becoming easier for me to feel decent…but that doesn’t mean that it’s hard to feel bad. Matt. Killed himself. It sinks in more every day.

Is twelve weeks three months?

I got dinner with my friend Stephen last night, and then we came back to my house to watch a movie (finally saw Moonrise Kingdom which will stay on my list of movies to buy, and I’ll be on the lookout for the soundtrack as well). We went to Rumours East which has a beautiful outdoor seating area. I might go back just for that. The food was good, but too expensive to eat very regularly. It was a gorgeous place to just sit, talk, drink.

Anyway. I felt a little sad last night though, because I felt really pretty but had no one around to appreciate it.  I know, it’s one of those “secondary losses.” I should be satisfied that I just felt pretty, and stop complaining. Ugh, it’s frustrating that I can’t have what I want. Maybe it’s good that I come to terms with this now rather than later. Who knows.

It’s been twelve weeks today. Twelve weeks ago, Matt was still alive but knew that he wouldn’t be by the end of the day. We would have been texting about whether to go to Costco after work to get lettuce. The plan was to have veggie burgers and salad that night. I don’t think I ended up having anything for dinner though.

It’s still so frustrating to me that I have to move on but don’t want to. I AM moving forward. I’m still alive, still have a life, can still thrive and be happy with life, and can still love people. I HATE that Matt isn’t here with me. Fucking hate it. But there is absolutely nothing that I can do about that; it was his decision to leave, and I made my opinion clear as day to him over and over and over again – even minutes before he killed himself. He knew what I thought, and went the other direction anyway. It’s useless for me to fight it. All I can do now is nurse my wounds and try to heal. Oh, my Matt. It’s still surreal sometimes to think that he stuck a gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger. WTF.

Not sure what I’ll do this evening. I might just go home and do some drawing. Michael’s had all their canvases 50% off so I bought a bunch. Started an oil pastel the other night which needs lots of work before I ever show it to anyone, so that one might get scrapped. I’d really like to be able to do good oil pastel portraits though. We’ll see.

some ramblings

I want to be healthy. I want to feel good about myself. I need to stop spending money going out. I should start working out again, even if it’s just taking a walk after I get off work. I would like to lose weight and feel pretty. I’ve been wildly unsuccessful in disciplining myself to exercise on a regular basis, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t give it another shot. I saw an idea on Pinterest – each time you work out, you put a dollar in a jar. After a few months, if you’ve done well, you treat yourself to something nice. I wonder if that would be incentive enough for me. I would need to get some $1 bills for this….

I’d kind of like to go to Beaman Park tonight, but I don’t know if I should do that alone. The trails are usually pretty quiet. I wish Katie lived closer.

Helen gave me two bookshelves yesterday (best mother-in-law EVER) which perfectly match the one already in the bedroom (they’re all from World Market) which is making me even more excited about re-doing my bedroom. I feel like the bed is never going to ship; the estimated delivery date is something like June 5-June 23. Pretty much the whole month of June. But I haven’t started re-organizing or anything yet so I shouldn’t be complaining.

I’m feeling a little sad right now because I just looked through the June edition of Martha Stewart Living, and it’s making me want to throw summer parties and buy a farm and landscape everything and be creative and happy. This was our plan, basically. But no more. I would still love to do those things eventually but I don’t want to do them alone. Funny – as independent as I am, I adored being married to Matt. He had no problem with my independence; I think he liked it actually. I’ve had the fleeting thought that I should have changed my last name when we got married, but that never occurred to me while Matt was still alive. Oh well, it’s not a big deal anyway.

I need some goals and projects to work on. Goal can be to exercise – that’s not hard to assign. I’m still in the middle of the feather quilt that I started during one of Matt’s hospital stays last year, and I like it so I really ought to finish it. I also wonder if I should invest in some nice yarn and work on some crochet projects to sell. That granny square shawl that I made turned out so well.

So tonight I think I’m going to clean up the house, and then either do some laundry or get out my sewing. Or both. Still need to wash dishes from game night on Friday, though there aren’t too many of those. I could probably knock that out on my lunch break. Also need to get some cat litter and change the litter boxes.

Enough rambling for now.


Honestly, the past week has probably been the best since Matt died. This doesn’t mean that I haven’t cried or felt depressed; it just means that I have felt less of those things than before. I think there are a few factors involved here. I have realized in the last week or so that I still have the ability to care a lot about other people. I can love people besides Matt, and receive love back. It won’t be the same, but I’ve just been grateful for any that I can get this week. It means so much to me that I have friends who seem to deeply care about me, and I’m encouraged to see that I can care about them too. Being able to give and to receive love is a very good thing, and I’ve been glad to see that I’m still capable of both.

Another possible reason that this has been a pretty decent week is that I can tell how much I have changed in the last 11 weeks. When I read over older entries, I still feel all those emotions as I’m remembering how I felt when I wrote about them, but they’re more dull now. (This isn’t true across the board or all the time – it’s just so much better than it had been.) I’m glad to see that I have made progress. It didn’t seem like I was getting anywhere at all in the midst of everything, but with 11 weeks’ perspective I can tell that I was. It’s sad, but a good thing. Matt is not in the present anymore – he’s a memory. Yes, that’s still depressing. But time makes these things so much easier to accept and to deal with. No, my life is not what I wanted it to be. I’m not a very ambitious woman; I had exactly what I wanted in being married to Matt – except for his mental illness. But I am accepting change and trying to do it gracefully and honestly, because I have no other choice.

I bought a bed frame today. I haven’t slept in my bed since Feburary 20th, and my therapist has encouraged me to set some kind of goal for myself with regards to sleeping there again. So, to that end, I bought a bed frame. It’s shipping from Amazon so I won’t have it for a while, but that will give me time to clean up and re-organize. I’ll have to make it into MY bedroom, not our bedroom. The bedroom and the garage are going to be the hardest rooms to make “mine,” not “ours.” Yes, this is also depressing. But I have to tackle it, and I am going to.

Life certainly can be frustrating. I’m learning so much out of this. I hope that this makes me a better person eventually, though I kind of feel like it already has somehow.