Thursday, December 30, 2010

Star, The New Version

Hopefully this post will not sound cheesy as it could be.

This morning I took my (hopefully) last state exam to become the teacher I want to be.
Last week, I got the last required one and this week's test was an added certification to teach middle school science.  [I passed both of them.]
On the ride over to the testing center, I heard the famous country song "Broken Road" by Rascal Flatts.
It is played a lot on country stations and at weddings.
When I met Roger, I thought about how it applied to us.
But that is not what this is about.
Not at all.  A bit more abstract actually.

My new year's resolution is to love me.
To love my body. To love what I am. To love my life.
As this song played I thought about the broken road of my life that has brought me this far.
I listened closely to the lyrics and thought about not how they applied to a relationship with another person, but instead, how they apply to the new me that is here now.
How I lost myself a few times in my life by giving up who I am to the latest boyfriend or trend or friends.
How all the things, bad and good, brought me to this place right now.
How becoming a teacher should have been so obvious but I had to go through all sorts of things and broken hearts and broken dreams to figure it all out.
But I figured out who I am.
I figured out what makes me happy and discovered more of my talents like photography.
Now I just need to love me.
The real me.
The me I have found and love her with everything I am.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Wedding Dreams

When Roger and I got engaged, they came.
Wedding dreams and nightmares.
Ones where I was pregnant.  Ones where the catering never came.
Ones where things went terribly wrong.
But none of those came true.
The wedding went off flawlessly (at least from my view).

After the wedding, I had wedding dreams and nightmares too.
So did Roger.
Of course it was too late for those to come true.
I had new real nightmares awaiting me.

Last night, I had a new wedding nightmare.
It was not a wedding with Roger.  It was a wedding with Mr. X.
[Interestingly enough I referred to him as Mr. X in the dream.]

In this particular dream, I was in my hotel room getting ready putting on my dress.
But for some reason, all my bridesmaids were gone.
It was just me.
"Why am I alone?  Where is everyone?"
Then I realized I had forgot to book a room for the wedding night for Mr. X and me.
The bridesmaids were going to be sleeping in this room.
Mr. X and I can't sleep in this room with my bridesmaids on my wedding night!
So I decided to drive back to the hotel I had stayed at with my bridesmaids a few nights before.
As I am about to leave the hotel, I see Mr. X.
I tell him he needs to drive me to the other hotel to see if I can get a room for us and he agrees.
The wife of my photographer mentor (and former wedding photographer) was working at that hotel and I asked her if she could hook me up.
We drove back to the hotel where the wedding was to be but I had not done my hair or my makeup.
As I am about to go up to my room, I see it is time for the wedding to start.  I ask Mr. X to stall the crowd so I can finish getting ready.  "It will only be five more minutes, I promise."  He smiles and agrees.
The coordinator spots me and the bridesmaids have already gone down the aisle.  Everyone is waiting on me.  She says it is time to start and that I look fine.  No need for makeup or my hair today.
I beg for more time to get ready.  My hair is in rolled into an everyday bun.
"I need to look my best. There will be pictures of this day."
She insists that I walk down the aisle now.
I concede but insist that I will be putting on makeup before the formal pictures.
I start to walk down the aisle.  My bouquet is magically in my hands.
My heart starts to beat fast and loud.  It feels like it is going to beat out of my chest.
I feel lightheaded. (I wonder if my heart was beating this fast while I was sleeping?)
Midway down the aisle, I see the wife of my photography mentor again sitting in the audience.
I run over to her.  I need help.  I feel so alone.
I plead to her to help me.
She tries to coax me.  "You can do this.  It is going to be okay."

I woke up.

I laid in bed a few minutes before getting up.
On my new wedding day, at some point in the future, I cannot be alone.
Someone must stay with me the night before.
And I will probably need a good friend to walk me down the aisle this time.

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Recycling Nazi

With affection, I have been deemed the recycling nazi.
And I tried to think back if this was part of widow-ness or part of me historically.
Fortunately/unfortunately I think it was part of me way before even Roger entered the picture.

I think it started in NYC.
NYC residents are required to recycle.
And we recycled everything under the threat of a fine.

But... after Roger died.
Yes, it did become even more of an obsession.
As a control freak who just had the world ripped out from under me and I felt I was spinning out of control, I needed something I could be in the driver's seat of since death was not an option.
So what could I control?
Recycling! [And choosing whether to eat or not, mostly not.]

Yes, I am still a bit obsessed.
My friends and family are even still a bit scared of me.
Recently, I found out some good friends hid some styrofoam containers from me last New Year's Eve when their catered dinner came in individual dinner portions.
"Do not let Star go in the garage."
Another friend confessed she thinks of me as she brushes her teeth and lets the water continually run.
Others have told stories where as they were recycling, reusing, or reducing they thought "Star would be proud of me."
I laugh mostly.
It is nice that perhaps I am influencing people's thinking about recycling and such.
But I really hope I do not terrorize people to the point they are afraid of me.
That is not my intention.
I am just a control freak who deeply believes in the three R's.
So I apologize to those have felt my wrath as the recycling nazi.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

My Holiday Check-in

You can't see it but there is a superman underneath the white shirt.
I almost feel like I owe a posting about how I am doing this season.
"All widows & widowers report your status please."
So here it goes...

Putting up the Christmas tree was hard this year.
About half my Christmas ornaments are from Roger.
So the process of decorating the tree was pinged with a bit of sadness.
Scoobie Doo. Coke bears. The Hulk. Clark Kent outfit.
I tried hard to be happy for Mr. X as he adores Christmas.
But Christmas has never been a great holiday for me.
I think my growing up beat it out of me.
My mother was hardcore about decorating.
Starting immediately after Thanksgiving.
Christmas threw up everywhere on everything.

Then I was in choir from the fourth grade through the twelve.
We sang Christmas carols and inspired music from August till January.
Needless to say, I had enough Christmas for almost a lifetime.
Then throw the dead husband thing on top and I could almost not have Christmas and be okay.

But after that small emotional incident with the tree, I have not felt overly sad.
A few good happy memories have found their place in my head.
Not necessarily Christmas oriented but it has been nice to smile instead of cry.

But I have also been busy.
The semester ended last week and getting there was a challenge.
I took a required state exam yesterday which meant I was studying a lot.
[I passed by the way.]
Not to mention Lil Paperia photo shoots and shopping for gifts.

I do wonder how the actual day will be.
And New Year's Eve.
It is always hard for me to enter into a new year.
Further and further away from 2008.

So far so good really for me.
I am in shock I feel this "good" in ways.
Parts of me thought I would never be able to enjoy the holidays again.
Alas I am.  Alas.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Last week as I was standing in my internship classroom, I had this almost woozy feeling.
I looked around and almost had to pinch myself.
This intense feeling of surreal-ness came over me.
It was palatable.
I almost felt faint.

I could not believe for about two minutes that this is my life.
Me? Standing in a classroom?
Becoming a teacher?
How did this happen?
Is this real?
Is this the dream?

Simply three years ago I was just about to get married.
My invites were just sent and I was anxiously awaiting RSVPs.
I was working in computer software design.
Going to all day meetings about project statuses and software implementations.
If I go back a little further, ten years ago I was working as a pharmacy technician.
Working in a hospital filling IV orders and learning how to make chemotherapy.
And here I am now. Becoming a science teacher.
And now I am doing photography.

So many things have changed.
My life is no where I thought I would be.
It is a weird feeling not to be in the spot you think should be.
For life to change so quickly in so little time.

I know I am not alone in this feeling but sometimes I look at some of my friends who have been in the same job for years.
Or married to the same person for long periods of time.
Do they reflect back?
Did they think their lives would be dramatically different yet they are not changing?
Do they feel this surreal-ness?

Then I flash forward.
Where will I be in three more years?
Where will I be in ten?
I almost hope it is predictable and something like married with kids and teaching with photography on the side.
I just hope I can stop feeling like a revolving door of life.
Just a little predictability would be nice.
Just a little.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


Back in 2008, I do not really remember the moment that I decided to become a teacher.
I could probably look back at this blog and find the day.
But I do remember the day I decided to quit my job back in November 2008.
My supervisor had just informed me that they "understood my tragedy" but it would be "unfair to my team" for me to have the same work-from-home day each week in order to attend grief counseling.
I happily quit. I wanted to scream it at them.
I only had one close friend on my team.  [Side note: when I later asked a few others on the team, they said they would have totally understood.]
On November 21, I went into the office for one last day to hand over my computer, my documents, and my emails.
To say goodbye.

But I left with a smile on my face.
I was relieved.
I had made the right decision.
I had a few friends at work but only one good friend.
Only a few keep in touch now.

This week is the end of my first internship.
I had to hold back the tears as I said thanks to my supervising teacher.
The team I worked with is amazing.
They support each other especially in times of sadness.
They work together to help the students.

I feel like I am part of a family there.
Administration is supportive of the teachers.
Most of the students are good kids.
I can relate to the other teachers.
I feel like we could be really good friends.
Leaving is the last thing I want to do.

Yes I am applying for a job there.
But in the mean time, I must say goodbye.
Very very sadly.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My Ring, Again

I swear I feel like each November/December since widowness I have had ring issues.
Two years ago, I had my ring redesigned and a meltdown in the store.
Last year,  I lost a stone from the old wedding band and had a slight meltdown.
This year, at least my meltdown was when I was alone.

I went to get my ring inspected.
The stone from the engagement ring part was loose.  It was twisting in the setting.
I cannot imagine losing that!
So they had to take it away from me.
Only for a day but...

Then I turned around.
A face.
So familiar.
Wait, she was here four years ago.
The November I received my ring.
She is the one who helped Roger and me find the perfect diamond.
She was sweet and non-pressuring.
Does she recognize me?
Did she hear about the redesign and meltdown?
Does she just think I am a divorcee?

On my drive home, I looked down at my hand and noticed I now have a ring tan.
On my right hand. Not my left.
I did not cry in the store this time.
I cried in my car.

Roger, I miss you.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Unplanned Flashback

Two blogs post in one day...
This hasn't happened for a while.

"Something has happened" were not the words I expected to hear this morning during the first period of my student teaching day.
My supervising teacher and I were not sure what to think.
What could be happening.
Then eventually the news came.
One of the popular, sweet, smart students had died.
A student I had just watched that morning on the [prerecorded] announcements.

Then I saw.
Their pain.
The teachers' sadness.
I wanted to help.
I wanted to relate.
But how much is too much?
Where is my place in all of this?

The news spread.
I watched as students broke down.
My heart breaking for them..
Remembering my own heart break.
My questions.
My fear.

I want to stop it but I cannot.
I want to protect them but it is too late.

It is not fair.
It is not fair for kids to know this at their age.
For God's sake, they are only fourteen at the most.
It is too early for them.

Then I think of the parents.
The siblings.
Thinking of them as they lay down tonight.
As they go throw the roller coaster of grief.
So unnatural.
So unfair.

I blocked the tears most of the day.

Flashing Back

I am not sure if the flashbacks will ever go away completely.
They certainly are not as raw but still linked with emotion for me.
Sometimes they came out of left field but sometimes they are linked to just a trigger to remind me.

On Saturday night, Mr. X and I went to have dinner with his parents.
We had a nice dinner and then sat down to watch a movie together.
"The Family Stone" was on regular TV and I was the only one who had seen it.
I like the movie as I think it is pretty humorous at times.
I also knew there was sad ending to the movie.

The tears came.
And came.
And came.
Thankfully no one, except Mr. X, could see my face.

At one point in the movie, the oldest daughter lays down with her mother as she is napping.  She wraps her arms around her.
As Roger was being pulled off life support I just wanted to crawl up into the bed with him.
Especially once they pronounced officially gone.
I wanted to wrap my arms around him.  Pull him close to me.
But I couldn't.
Because he was donating his organs, because I was donating his organs, he had only a few minutes before we had to let him go.
Or at least it felt like a few minutes at the time and to me.

At another point, the husband's face as he crawled into bed with his wife truly expressed my feelings.
After I knew Roger was going to die, crawling into bed was painful.
Knowing he would never come home to me.
Knowing he would never crawl into bed with me.
I remember those moments so vividly.
Memories are linked to emotions and emotions were certainly high.

At the end of the movie, you see the entire family for their first Christmas without their mom.
Although my first set of holidays were not too bad, my second set hurt a lot.
I was no longer numb.
Emotions were at the surface.
Roger was truly dead the second set of holidays.
The first set he was just not here.

I do not know why I am surprised at how weepy I became.
From the outside, I want to laugh at myself.
Did I really think grief was done with me?
Did I really think I would not think of Roger as the holiday season madly approaches?
At least this year, it does not feel like a boiling pot of water ready to come over the top of the pot.
This year, at least so far, it feels like a few bubbles coming to the surface sporadically.
It reminds me of the sulfur springs in St. Lucia.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I cannot think of a cohesive title for this one.
It may end up being a rambling of thoughts.

I met my best friend Holly in the summer of 2007.
A year before things went down.
We met while in the midst of wedding planning.
We clicked pretty much right away.
Since we both worked in front of a computer screen, we would chat for hours as our day ticked by.
Honestly, it was one of the things that helped me get through my job.

At my wedding, she and her fabulous husband Scott helped do some of the set up.
It was part of a barter deal.  They helped us and Roger and I helped them with their set up.
She got married about three months after me.
We were all husbands and wives.
We did dinners together and hung out.
I just knew the four of us would be friends forever.
Just like the movies.

I called Holly the morning of.
One of the three people I called first.
I do not really remember my thinking but I wanted my Holly there.
And she came.
And she did not leave me for days.

Yesterday morning I logged on to my chat program to see if Holly was online.
And she was.
We chatted a few minutes.
Later in the day, I was thinking about my friendship with Holly and how thankful I am for her.
Then I realized something.
Something I knew would happen eventually.
Someone I had met after Roger was around longer than him.
Holly and I have been friends for over three years now.
And Roger and I were just short of three years together.
I know it does not seem like a big deal.
But a part of me coiled at the thought that I could know someone longer than Roger even when I met them after Roger.
Yes, I still get to know Roger third hand after his death.
But not from Roger.
It feels unnatural for this to happen.

And I know there will be a day when I know Mr. X for longer than Roger.
Maybe this is a rehearsal for that day.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

Under Construction

Two days a week I have internship.
I chose this school on purpose but I did not think through the commute too well.
Roger's old house is off the same exit.
The crash site.
Yeah, it is on the commute as well.

I wrote about a long time ago about how the government put a sign up for me in his memory.
Strangely it was really far off the road.
I always wondered why.
People could not even see it was there.
It was upsetting.
I wanted it to remind not just me of the accident but also the other driver.

However, recently I think I may know why.
The road is starting to undergo construction.
So perhaps it will be closer to the road.

Because of all the construction, they have put up temporary barriers.
Part of me gets angry at those barriers.
Why could they not have been there two years ago?!
I have these visions of how different that morning would have been.
Perhaps we would have seen a SUV hitting the barrier.
But it would not have affected me.
It would not have affected Roger.  

But there were no barriers that morning.
Nothing to stop the destruction.

Sunday, October 31, 2010


In 2006, on Halloween, I proposed to Roger.
His favorite holiday. My second favorite holiday.
He was a wizard that year.
I was a photo booth.

Four years ago today.
It is so hard to believe.
And it sucks.

I ended up canceling my annual Halloween party.
A lot of people could not make it.
A lot of people never replied.
It is just a lot of work to do for a few people.

So sadly it almost feels like just another day.
The costume I planned for almost a year goes into the filing cabinet.
I did throw a quick one together to give out candy to the neighborhood kids.

Mr. X was really sweet and did get down all the Halloween stuff from the attic.
The porch is all decorated thanks to him.
Sadly, the other three huge storage containers are sitting in the living room almost filled with the indoor decor.

I will do the party next year.
Even if it is for me and a few friends.   

Roger & me 2006

Halloween 2007

Friday, October 29, 2010

The Greatest Fear

During my freshman year of college, the university had a big campaign against rape.
They told us how one out of four girls would be raped before Thanksgiving break.
And most likely by someone they knew.
I was scared.
It was my greatest fear.
It was easily a possibility.

I had mace on my key chain.
I did not walk the mile to my car at night alone.
When going out with guy friends, I made sure to keep my wits about me.
I used the buddy system with my roommate.

The fear carried through with me.
I check my car before I get in it.
When I am alone at night, I keep my eyes and ears alert.
I notice people around me.
If someone looks creepy, I try to describe what they look like in my head.

And thankfully, knock on wood, I have not been raped.

But no one told me nor did I really think it was plausible that I would become a widow.
That Roger and I would not make it to our first wedding anniversary because of death.
No warning speech by wedding officials.
No precautions to take.
No what to do if steps.  
Because it does not happen.
Widows are old.
Widows have adult children.

There are not many things that cause me fear.
Fear does not take over as an emotion for me.
But the morning of the accident, the fear was tangible. 
My heart was sinking.
I was praying.
Fear was so intense.  

Now I have still have a fear of rape but I have a new greatest fear.
I fear that I will have to deal with widow-ness again.
I fear more absolutely terrible unfair things may happen to me in my life.  
I fear losing friends in car accidents or freak events.  

I try to push down the fears out of my consciousness.
But it is still there. 
Still there. 

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sweet Relief

On Wednesday I got my will signed.
And it feels strange to have it done at thirty when most people are enjoying married life and kids and trips with their husbands and wives.
But at the same time I feel a bit relieved.

Roger died interstate.
Meaning he did not have a will.
I had to figure out where things went.
Who got what.
What to do with his motorcycle.
What to do with his gym equipment.
What to do with his prized possessions.

For the last two years, I was always afraid of my death.
Not for the normal reasons.
But for all the things that would happen afterwards.
Scared of who would be in control by default since I did not have children or a husband.
It was a constant thought.

But now I feel like I can die in peace of sorts.
At least who I want will be in control.
They can make the decisions.
And since sometimes it feels like we share a brain, I know things will be okay.
They will be able to figure it out.

For everyone who reads my blog:

  • Get a will especially if you have kids.
  • Get life insurance especially if you have a spouse and/or kids.  
  • Make sure someone knows what to do with your organs.
  • Make sure someone knows what to do with your body.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A Roger Dream

I am a huge fan of "Grey's Anatomy".
Sometimes I cry a lot as certain topics hit close to home.
This past week's episode got stuck into my head.
A little more than usual.

Roger does not enter my dreams much anymore.
Sadly, I think.
And this particular dream was not my ideal Roger dream.
But I guess he can wiggle his way into my dreams in ways I might not expect.

In this dream, Roger was alive.
Sort of.
The doctors were able to save his soul.
And they put it into a worm.
The worm was kept at the hospital in a cage.
Yes, a cage.
The cage was wire like for a bunny or something.
Why Roger did not get out of the cage I do not know.
I asked Mr. X to help me free Roger.
We broke into the hospital and pried the wire holes bigger.
Roger escaped.
Roger the worm.

Now, I would love to have some normal Roger dreams.
Dreams where I could talk to him.
See him in his regular body.

One request for the writers of Grey's, no more worm episodes please.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Strange Feeling

It is probably because I turned thirty.
It is probably just timing but... I have found myself twice feeling very out of body.

On Monday, I was sitting in class waiting for my professor to start the class.
I looked down at my left arm and looked at the scar.
Roger is dead.
I have a scar.
I just have a hard time believing that he is dead.
It does not feel so raw anymore.
The pain feels so far away (at the moment) so it does not feel real to me.
If I did not see Roger's handwriting and live in this house, I would seriously doubt it was real at all.
Except I have a scar to remind me.
From the day.
Part of me is grateful for the scar.
Part of me hates it.

Yesterday, I was standing in the classroom.
Circulating between the students helping them with the assignment.
And I could not believe I was there.
It felt strange.
Looking down at me and thinking of the past two years.
And then thinking about three years ago.
I was not even married three years ago.

I cannot even put into words how weird it feels not to have the pain so close to the surface.
I tried to explain to Mr. X last night.
I almost want to cry at times because the pain feels far away.
Almost an oxymoron.

So weird.

Friday, October 1, 2010

So Here I Am

It is my thirtieth birthday.
A few weeks ago, after a post, my friend Candice emailed me about her thirtieth birthday.
How it felt good.
And I have to say I agree.
I am glad to turn at least the page to a new decade.
A new part of my life.

In some ways, I feel I cannot really complain about my 20s.
The first seven years of them were pretty great.
I traveled a lot.
Sweden, Australia, England, France, and Holland.
I moved to NYC.
And then back to Orlando.
I have an amazing set of friends that grows all the time.
I met a fantastic guy and gained his wonderful family.
I had a beautiful wedding.
It is sad and annoying that one August day could cast such a bad taste for my 20s.

I am hopeful and praying for a better decade.
This is not where I thought I would be at people.
A lot of people say that, I know.
I am trying not to be depressed about it.
I met some of my goals.
I own my own home plus a rental.
Mr. X and those amazing friends still are still a big part of my life.
Gizmo and Gadget are the best cats.
I am enjoying my education for the most part.
Started my own business.

So I am trying not to focus on that fact I experienced widowness.
That I lost my best friend and husband.

But today is my birthday.
I will be happy today.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Five Years Ago

Five years ago you forced me into our first meeting.
You said the movie is playing at this particular time and you would meet me at the front of the theatre.
I did not even have your cell phone number to tell you no.
I was not sure if you checked your email as obsessively as me.
Since I am a nice person, I went.
I did not put much effort into how I looked.
I did not think I would even really like you.
You however looked so well put together.
Black jeans that were too big for you.
Burgundy button down shirt.
Your walk was so excited.
You had a big goofy looking smile.
We saw Corpse Bride.
You had already seen it but saw it again with me anyway.
Afterwards we went to Bahama Breeze.
You did not even have a beer.
You made me blush.
I emailed after the meeting that I wanted to "just be friends."
You became my friend.

Five years later I am your widow.
We were great friends.
I fell so hard for you.
I love you so much.
And I miss you so so much.

Five years.
So short.
So long.
So different than I ever imagined, wanted, or dreamed.

Thank you for forcing me into that first meeting.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


When I was in high school and I was asked to pick a major, I had such a hard time.
I liked a lot of things.
I was good at quite a few things.
How could I just pick one thing.

I ended up picking biology.
Not sure why.
Not sure what I thought I would do with it.
But I picked something.
[Interesting enough my major is now Biology education.]

I got accepted as biology major at Virginia Tech.
But then my guidance counselor told me about a particular scholarship.
A national math scholarship.
My major would have to be changed to math though and I would have to take a test.
So I did.
And a little known fact, I was in the top ten in the U.S. that year but only the #1 person won the scholarship so I got a certificate and went to Virginia Tech as a math major.

And then life progressed.
In 2003, I applied to Pace University in NYC.
As an education major.
I was accepted.
Went to orientation but figured out that I could not afford to pay for school on my own, even with loans.
So I withdrew.

Life progressed some more.
My good manager at my last job (imagine Glenda the good witch) convinced me to go back to school.
I chose Healthcare Administration.
I could do almost the entire program online part time.
But I was not happy with my job.
Then I was transferred to the wicked witch of the west manager.
I cried at work a lot.
I had insomnia on Sunday nights dreading the week ahead.
Completely unhappy. This is not what I wanted to be when I grew up.
This is not what the girl way back in high school wanted to be when she grew up.

I cried to Roger.
"Why did I make us move into a bigger more expensive house?"
Roger was not sure how to make things better.
I could not find a job I thought would make things better.
So I cried even more.

Roger died.

In November 2008, I finally decided I did not want to be unhappy anymore.
And I certainly did not want to work for the wicked witch.
When I thought back to all the things I liked about my job, it was the teaching parts.
The times I was mentoring or getting the physicians to finally understand.
That's when I smiled.

The first time I helped out in a classroom in January 2009, I felt that feeling again.
I think helped me start to heal a bit.

Each time I enter a classroom, the passion burns warmer and warmer.
Yesterday, a teacher told me she saw me as a good teacher.
I could do this job well.
I wanted to hug her.
I am nervous about teaching but I cannot describe the feeling I get when I am helping students.
Passionate is the only word that comes to mind.

On my way to my reflection class last night, I started to cry.
Roger wanted so badly to take away my pain.
To make me happy.
To help me find my passion.
And he did it.
I am finally there.
It feels so good to know what I want to be and to be on the track to achieve it.
But he had to die to make it so.
So I cry.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Birthday, Again

Thirty in less than three weeks.

I know I wrote about my birthday a few weeks or months ago.
I am not sad in a traditional sense about turning thirty.
In some ways, I am excited.
Especially since a few friends of mine have planned a surprise for me.

For me, this is the decade things will be accomplished in a traditional sense for me.
I will have my degree in May 2011 at thirty & a half.
I may possibly get married (again) during the next decade.
And I will hopefully have children too.

For me, it is more strange weird eerie feeling.
Not regretful.
Unlike some people, I have traveled some so I cannot really regret that.
I am not as thin as I would like but I am okay, at the moment, with that fact.
It just does not seem real.
Not just because time flies and twenty-one seems like five years ago versus almost ten.
But because most days in my head it is still 2008.
Yes, it feels like two years have past but part of me does not want to go past 2008.
Instead, a 2008 part III.

There is one bit of sadness.
No gift from Roger.
After getting a posthumous gift for my twenty-eighth part of me wants another.
Selfish perhaps.
But I wonder what it would be like.

So thirty here I come.
I hope you are ready for me.
A new decade, a new beginning.

Friday, September 10, 2010

It's a Small World

When Roger first died, I felt like I was completely alone.
On top of that and all the other hundreds of feelings, I felt completely unique.
After all, no one in my immediate circle had experienced anything like that before.
I was suddenly very different than my friends and family.
I felt like circus freak that people were afraid of.

And then as I expanded my view in the following months and now years, I found others.
Bloggers, friends of friends, and then new friends.
Now I know about ten people or so with similar stories.
Some of who are close to me.

Last Saturday I met a couple who really rattled my brain.
The woman worked for my wedding caterer.
I heard a bit of her story last year after her husband was killed.
Her husband had also been in an accident.
No kids.
And there was even some talk that perhaps she worked at my wedding.

Then her date was a widower.
Her neighbor.
Young as well.
No kids.
The fact that jolted me though was that he knew Roger.
He actually worked with Roger.
I was in shock at first.

Then I was intrigued.
I wanted to hear his Roger stories.
I couldn't help but smile.
Finding someone and talking to someone who also knew Roger validates he was real.
He was alive.
He was not a figment of my imagination.

The world is so small in ways.
But it feels good to have people like me.
Who understand me.
Who get it.
Who have similar feelings and experiences.
Nothing can compare.

Sunday, September 5, 2010


Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia

As I believe I wrote about, I loved the book Eat, Pray, Love.
Yes, it was not a widow book per se.
But I related tremendously to her grief.
The loss of herself and her life.
And her mission to find peace.
She felt like her life as she knew it was in ruin.

When I found out a movie was being made, I knew I would want to see it.
I knew I would relate.
I knew I would cry.
So a few weeks ago, I met up with a friend to see it.

Many things in the movie spoke to me as I saw the book come to film.
A movie I will possibly even own so I can rewind some of the words of wisdom.
[I own very few movies.]

While watching I tried to take note of some of the things they said in the film.
One part of the movie that I made sure to remember was a scene in Rome.
The main character is exploring Mausoleum of Augustus.
At one time, this was the burial place of the Emperor Augustus.
When Rome fell, unfortunately it was ransacked by people in 410.
Then years later someone used it for their home.
Then ruined again after they were kicked out.
Over and over again, this one very sacred and glorious place was ruined.

Roger's dying felt like my life was ruined.
All the plans.
All of my future.
Everything I held sacred felt violated.
I felt as if everything was in shambles.
My empire had fallen.

But as the movie says, ruin is a gift.
A gift for transformation.
A chance to transform completely.
After being ruined, a place can become something new.
A person can become something new.

So perhaps my life will not be the glorious Rome I had planned.
Maybe I will not be the emperor of a colossal kingdom.
But I will be and am changed.
With a new purpose.
I can become something new.
The ruins are never gone however.
Just transformed.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Need Me

I had to sort of giggle at a situation I came into the other day.

I have always been pretty independent.
Not antisocial but I always try to do things for myself.
It is the way I grew up.
I was left alone a lot.
I learned to keep myself entertained.
I learned to keep myself alive.
I learned to meet my own needs physically and emotionally.
Thus issues asking for help have always haunted me.

But after three years together, I was finally asking Roger for help.
I needed him.
As my walls fell down, he was trusted enough for me to need him.
But it took me a while to get to that point.

When he died, I was devastated that I had trusted him.
I let him in.
And when I needed him the most and he was dead.
I was pissed.
At me.
At Roger.
At the driver of that Isuzu Rodeo.

In the last two years, I have learned not to need people as much again.
To become completely independent again.
I am stubborn at points to let people help me.
Not to mention I get nervous about it.
Feel like I owe people.

Laying in bed Saturday night, Mr. X was a bit tiffed at me.
I had not woken him up when I had insomnia Friday night.
Instead I chatted with a friend online.
He was annoyed I did not wake him up.
On Saturday, he had driven me to a friend's house to "celebrate" the dead day anniversary.
But of course I had been difficult in letting him drive me.
I did not want to ask for his help or to feel like I needed it.
Plus it was inconvenient for him to drive me.
So I made a deal.
I would let him drive me if he went to see his parents too.

As we lay in bed that night I asked, "Why are you upset?"
"You won't let me help you."
"You won't let yourself need me."
I could not giggle at the moment.
But I was amused at the situation in a way.
I just hugged him and let him know that I do need him.
I need him a lot.

But I guess I need let my walls back down.
Let myself need.

Saturday, August 28, 2010


A few weeks ago, I was having dinner with some widow friends.
The three of us are all young, under thirty at the time.
All of our men died suddenly at young ages.
None of us have children.

We talked about how I have a place to put my anger.
A name even.
A face.
Someone to direct all the voices and shouting and mean thoughts.
Which is "nice" I think.
Their persons' deaths were not a result of an accident.
Or homicide.
Or even self inflicted.
Random heart issues.

And tonight as I tried to go to sleep (note the post time), I started thinking that they did not have to decide.
I had to make a decision.
I had to decide the time.
And the date.
I chose this day.
I had to chose the day my husband would die.
Forty-seven months after our first meeting, I chose his death day.
Three weeks after his birthday.

I hate that feeling.
Hate. Hate. Hate.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Check-Ins

First, thanks to all the people who have been emailing, facebooking, calling, and texting this week.
Unfortunately/fortunately this week I have been mostly fine.
Like most holidays and anniversaries during this journey it has been the time before the actual event that have been bad.
School started on Monday.
Thus I have been super distracted this week.
Super busy.
I cannot think about Saturday coming much.
And I feel mostly okay about Saturday.

In reality, the month before this week has been completely emotionally draining and hard for me.
Grief has been almost constant under my mask.
In reality, I needed these comments and love before this week.
I needed people to come over and be with me and hug me.

And I should have asked.
I should have been a bit more demanding.
But I still struggle with asking for help, even from Mr. X.
I still struggle admitting that I cannot do this alone.
And most people have their lives.
They are busy with work, family, and other friends.
I do not want to burden others with my grief.
With my struggles.

So I do it alone and struggle.
And then I feel bad when people expect me to sad this week.
Because right now, I do not feel exceptionally sad.
Not like I did earlier this month and during the end of July.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Meeting the Family

Last week I was super nervous about the weekend visit to Miami to have Mr. X meet Roger's family.
Mostly concerned about those closest to Roger including his mother.
Anxiety was also met with excitement.
I cannot even describe the feeling of home when I visit my given family in Miami.
My heart feels filled.
I am surrounded by people who love me and care about me.
And we all loved Roger.
That feeling is the best medicine in the world for heartache.

So combining my life and love of Mr. X with my Miami family was very important to me.
I know it is not a traditional family of marriage and extended family but I do not want to give up my Miami family for anything.
Life is complicated.
Family is complicated.
But this family is one gift from Roger I hope to never lose to traditional family standards.
No matter what people may think or say or gossip about.

So as we pulled into the driveway, my heart started to beat faster.
I thought, "Here we go!"
Worlds colliding!

The first night was at first emotional.
Roger's mom was overwhelmed.
She started to get a headache from her nerves.
Mr. X conversed with her in her limited English but she did laugh some and was her silly self as usual.
But we needed backup fast.
I called Roger's aunt, "Can we come visit?"
"Sure, come on over."

After four glasses of wine, introductions to Roger's cousins, aunt, and uncle, everything was good.
Mr. X, as usual, quickly adapted to the new situation.
He made the family laugh.  He laughed at their jokes.  He participated in their sarcasm.
Comments were made to me that they liked him.
Of course, one cousin had to make "the" speech:
"Take care of her.  She is our family.  She is our cousin for life."

Second day, we did errands with Grace, Roger's sister, and jokingly Grace and Mr. X alternated with "I like you", "I used to like you", and "I don't like you."
Roger's mom was impressed with Mr. X's Cuban coffee and love of Cuban sandwiches.
"Are you sure you aren't Cuban?"

That night Roger's aunt made me his favorite meal-marinated turkey meat with potatoes and rice.
It is so yummy.
And I was craving it bad.
It was delicious as usual and I got to share Roger's favorite food with Mr. X.

Third day was filled with a big family event.
Most of the family was coming to Roger's aunt's house for lunch.
Mr. X met a lot of Roger's cousins and aunts and all the little children that ran around.
He helped set up the event (lunch with that many people is always an event) and break down.
People were impressed.  "He helps!"
When we were leaving, Roger's mom, sister, cousin, and myself were in the car.
Mr. X was still chatting with people inside.
I had to chuckle.
He had known some of them for a few hours and at most some of them for forty-eight hours.
Yet he was still inside giving hugs and talking.

Overall the visit was a success.
We both were invited to come back anytime.
Worlds colliding went well.

Sigh... some relief.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Tonight I came home to a semi-empty house.
Gizmo and Gadget are having dental cleaning done which means they need to have anesthesia.
No one was in the hallway to greet me.
No one begging for some dinner.
No one to (try to) meow at me.

Dropping them off this morning was so hard.
Gizmo cried the whole way there and as we waited to be checked in.
I felt like I was leaving my safety blanket and my heart at the vet.

Then I got the phone call.
They need to stay the night.
The veterinarian had an emergency come in and so he was not able to complete the cleaning.
The staff say they are fine and happy.
They are in a huge crate and even explored the clinic a bit earlier.

But I cannot help but be a little worried.
The cats have been with me this entire journey.
They have never spent the night any where but here at home.
I cannot lose them.
I cannot lose them this week.
In this month.

I will pick them up tomorrow afternoon.
And I cannot wait to see my kitties.
My lovely sweet kitties.


During one of my grief sessions, my counselor asked me who I was before.
Before I was a bride.
Before I was a newlywed.
Before I was a widow.
She asked about things I enjoyed before.

It was a hard question.
At that point, it had been a long time that I did not have any of those titles.
We were engaged for fifteen months.
Married for six.
And I had been widowed for about six months.

I started to talk about photography.
How I loved taking photos.
How I always had a point-n-shoot camera in my purse for years and years.
My smile started to appear.
She encouraged me to pick my camera back up.
To start finding things to enjoy again.

Photography relaxes me.
It makes me smile.
To capture a bit of beauty in a strange new way or a true smile of a child or the expanding belly of a pregnant belly.

The past few weeks I have been struggling so much.
Sadness is been sweeping over me.
Loneliness is sitting on my shoulders.

I wanted to take some beautiful photos this past weekend.
While on a tiny vacation, I wanted to find some things to capture.
Things to photograph.
But... disappointment is all I found.
While Mr. X and I explored Charleston, rain poured from the sky for two of our three days.
I saw tons of things to take photos of but I could not risk all the rain.


Monday, August 16, 2010

No Bananas

On Friday morning, Mr. X and I started out on a road trip together.
I am not sure what I was thinking when I planned this trip.
A Friday morning.
In August.
Muggy humid August.
Slightly early in the morning.
Near the death anniversary.

The eeriness started early.
My stomach started to turn.
Mr. X told me he had put some bananas near my purse to eat in the car.

My excitement started to melt away.
Panic set in.  My smile disappeared.
Mr. X asked me what was wrong.
"No bananas in the car please."
"Just because."
"Because why? You hate the smell?  We can't throw away the peel right away? What?"
It took me a few minutes but I simply stated "Too similar."

Two years ago, I ate my banana in the car about fifteen minutes before the accident.
Roger never got to eat his banana.  It was in my bag.
I did not want Mr. X to miss his.

The similarities of the day kept going.
Getting the cats ready.
Division of chores.
Mr. X packing the car.
Mr. X driving.
Making fun of my music.
Cars getting close.

I had to remind myself of the differences.
We were not flying.
We were not driving the same roads.
We were not going to the same destination.
Mr. X is not Roger.  

Sigh... fifteen more days of August.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

One Big Day Down, Twenty Days to Go

August should be a nice month.
School is completed for a few weeks.
I get some traveling done.
Sounds perfect...

But instead I just distract myself through the thirty-one days.
Become super weepy.
Find it hard to breathe.
Think logically.
Or plan.

I just want to wake up when August is over.
I hate this month.
Hate. Hate. Hate.

I survived Saturday with a dear friend's baby shower in a different city.
Followed by a cook out with some of her dearest friends.
These friends are so friendly and sweet and accepting and fabulous.
As night took hold I spent part of the evening in the North Carolina air talking to one of her friends who happens to be a psychiatrist.
It was nice to talk to someone.
To remember.

Thanks to those who emailed or called.

Saturday, August 7, 2010


Today is Roger’s birthday. 
The date of my husband’s birth. 
I cannot help but remember and think of him.
[And be slightly weepy.]
His love of layered birthday cakes.
His learning to surf on his thirty-third birthday.
And all the tiny and large details that made me love him tremendously. 
And the details that made me want to celebrate the day he came into the world.

When I first met Roger (on, he was thirty-one. 
One year past my age preference.
I was forty-eight hours away from twenty-five.
As I have written before, the year Roger died I could not believe he was turning thirty-four. 
He took the day off of work. 
Cut his shaggy hair a bit and relaxed.
I had to work unfortunately.
If only I would have known. 
If only…

On this date this year, he would be turning thirty-six. 
Six years older than me. 
It seems impossible.
Of course it is impossible.
He will never be thirty-six in reality.
His traditional defined life stopped twenty-one days after turning thirty-four. 

I wonder what we would be doing on this birthday.
Cake? Yes of course.
Both of us taking the day off? Hopefully.
A trip?  Perhaps.
Dinner with friends? I hope so.
Dinner with family? At least at some point.
But alas none of these things. 

Happy Birthday, Roger!
I miss you more than words can even start to describe.
I adore you.
Part of my heart still belongs to you today and always.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Bad Widow

I threw something away.
It was ugly now.
My hate for it was growing.

But I feel like a bad widow for throwing this thing away.
Maybe even like I am a bad bride.

I threw away my bouquet this week.

The roommate moved out a month ago. (Thank God!!)
So Roger's stuff closet was available again.
As I moved my wedding planning book, my wedding albums, and some other things, I saw it again.
My bouquet.

I have never liked the way it dried.
The blue and white hydrangeas were beautiful at the wedding.
They were hideous after the wedding.
During drying process, the petals withered.
The colors looked awful.
The stems shrunk.
I hated it.

But after Roger died, I felt like I had to hold on to it.
Like it was required.
Part of some weird widow code.

So I broke the code.
I threw it in the trash.
Mr. X was shocked "Is that your bouquet?"


Monday, August 2, 2010

The Road

Way back I loved that road.
Before the accident.
Before it was my dreaded long everyday route to work.

I loved its gentle (Florida) hills.
I loved the 70 mph speed limit that I could do slightly higher on.
I loved the slight curves of the road.

The wildlife I would encounter is amazing.
Eagles soar above it.
The road crosses Lake Jessup so alligators swim below it.
And next to it.
As the sun comes up is just gorgeous.
Nests of these hawks sit on top of light poles.

The maintained landscaping and the natural Florida flora are beautiful.
Sand pines and long leaf pines.
Forget me nots.
Tall palm trees.
Short sebal palms.

It was a relaxing drive for me.
Especially while living on this side of Orlando.
It was a main mode of transportation at certain points of my life.
And I loved it.

But that changed after I had to drive more than half its length to get to a job I detested.
And after one of the worst weeks of my life, I hated the road down to the gravel.
I hated to be on it.
I hated to drive on it.
I hated to even think of it.

This past Friday night I was driving back from a friend's house.
Who happens to live off this road.
It was late.
My drive home included about about twenty minutes on this road.
Across the lake.
Up the gentle hills.
Around the curves.
Not many people were on the road.
I was playing a mix CD I made for myself.
The volume was way up.
And an old feeling started to find its way into my consciousness.
I found myself loving this road.
Enjoying the road.

Friday, July 30, 2010


Last weekend as Mr. X and I paved (aka hired people) the patio in the back, he told me about his hate of the question "Where do you see yourself in five or ten years?".
He was saying how when he was eighteen or so he was asked this question quite a bit.
He was graduating from high school and all.
And it always annoyed him.
At eighteen he had no idea.
So many things were up in the air.
So many variables could change.

But he did not think he saw himself here.
He could never imagine ten years ago that he would be completing a home improvement project with his girlfriend on a house.
That he would be in school completing a degree in a program he never even thought about at eighteen.
That he would be in love with me.

And of course that conversation made me do my own reflecting.
As I sat in my class on Monday morning, I could not believe I was there.
As the class discussed various science curriculums, I was sitting in awe.
I was a full time student.
To become a teacher!
Not working (in a traditional sense).
I am not spending my Monday morning in cube land.
How incredibly weird!

I was asked Mr. X's least favorite question not too long ago.
Actually almost exactly five years go to the month.
During an interview with my previous company.
Being an education student was not my answer.
It was not even on my radar.
My answer was some mundane answer about moving up the corporate ladder world.
And maybe I did want that at some point but not now at all.

It amazes me about how much I have changed.
Perhaps through normal maturing.
Perhaps through the widowdom.
But the reflection in the mirror quite different than five years ago.
And especially ten years ago.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

If I Could Write An Article for Brides or Newlyweds

I was only married in the traditional sense for six very short months.
Six months after planning a fabulous wedding, I was planning my husband's funeral.
I was asked questions about what Roger would have wanted in death.
Organ donation.
Keeping him alive for an extended about of time.
Or taking him off life support.
Questions that I mostly knew the answers to but I surely wish Roger and I had discussed things a bit more.

In the last two years, I have emailed a few wedding planning sites trying to get them to put something on their sites or magazines.
Even a wedding planner.
No one responds.
No one wants to think about the dark side of marriage.

In my mind, even before Roger died, being engaged was more than just planning a wedding.
It was planning a life together.
It was more than just the first day but days 2 through the end.
But couples should even talk the last days.

If I could advice brides and grooms, I would ask them to think ahead.
Way ahead.
Couples should discuss their preferences in the event of something horrible happening.
Ventilator or not?
Brain dead?
Organ donation?
Cremation or burial?

I am not saying plan the funeral details but think about it.
Think about the vow "till death do us part."
So the remaining soul will need to deal with the death part.

Just five minutes.
To think.
To discuss.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Just A Phone Call

Okay, so Roger is dead.
I get it.
I understand I cannot see him again.
No more snuggling.
No more hugs.
No contact.
I cannot be the traditional wife anymore.
I (somewhat) accept it.


I just want to call him.
Tell him about school and share how close I am to finishing.
Share some of my accomplishments.
Tell him about our friends and catch him up on their lives.
Tell him about his friends.
About all the new additions.
And some recent losses.

I want to email him my photos.
Get his feedback.
Talk about my business plans.
Get his advice about it.

I even want to tell him about Mr. X.
As crazy as that may sound.
If I cannot be with Roger, I want him to be part of my life.

It is a yearning that cannot be quenched.
I am longing for this connection to him so bad.

If only...

Monday, July 26, 2010

My Heart Stopped

I was sitting in the bookstore at school.
Mr. X was across the table.
He was finishing some homework.
I was finishing a sandwich.
We were chatting about oxidation states and the periodic table.

I grabbed a humor book to flip through.
We continued to chit chat.
I saw movement toward the front of the bookstore.
I quickly looked up.

My heart stopped.

I would have sworn it was him.
Sworn on anything if it was two years ago.

Same hair. Same color.
Same body build.
Same height.
Same walk.
He was not looking toward me.
He was looking for a book.
He disappeared around a shelf.

I had to gasp for my breath.

I waited for my heart to start beating again.

Just two years ago...

Sunday, July 25, 2010

A New Plan

When I first moved into Roger's place, I felt out of place.
Not due to Roger at all.  He tried to make me feel at home.  
I did not help the situation much and for that I am sorry.  

I did not know where to put my things.
His house was already decorated for the most part.
At least as much as he was ever going to do to it.
He was a bachelor.
His rooms already had their purposes.
Curtains were hung.  Furniture placed.
I put my things and my decor in the holes.
I tried to combine our things.
But soon after I moved in, we bought this house.
And it was our home.  

Roger and I had many plans for this house.
We planned an arbor in the backyard.
It was going to be over our patio and extending into the back.  
It was going to be beautiful.
In five to ten years.  That was the plan.

But then things changed.  Plans shattered. 
Our home became my home.

I remember in the first few months of grief trying to make our house into my house.
I painted rooms.  I moved furniture.  
I covered furniture and I put up new photos.
But then I had this thought: "What about when another man moves into my life?"
I knew it would be odd to one day share this house with another.
So I sorta stopped making it my house.
I did a few things here and there but nothing too drastic.  
I wanted to wait.  
To change my house into a new our house again.

This Saturday morning, Mr. X and I woke up extremely early for a weekend to prepare for a new plan.  Our plan.
No more wood arbor.
But a screened room instead.
With pavers on the ground.
And a door.
A place to host friends and family.
Our family.  Our friends.
Our plan.

I want Mr. X to feel at home here.
I want this to be our home.
My hope is that Mr. X does not feel out of place.
Living in a place he cannot invest hope and dreams and plans.
I hope it is different for him than it was for me.  
I hope and I hope.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Words Words Words

When Roger first died, I could not construct proper sentences.
I would lose my train of thought right in the midst of a sentence.
Or I would use the wrong pronunciation or tense of a word.

In the last week or so, this has returned.
I cannot think of the proper word.
I change the spelling of words in my head and pronounce them completely incorrectly.
The other night I spelled the word "new" as "meew".
And I could not seem to spell it right no matter what.
Today I spelled the name "Michael" as "Michall".

No one has said anything but I find it somewhat amazing and weird that this symptom has returned.
Somewhat surprised.
In other ways, not surprised.
Grief has been really strong this week.
The weepiness has returned.
The constant strong thoughts of Roger.

Sigh... I wonder what other symptoms will return in the next coming weeks.
Why do I keep thinking this will get easier?!?
Wake me up in September.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Going Back

Some of my last memories of Roger alive happened between July 4th and August 21st.
However, as each day of this six week period clicks by, I have some memories associated with so many different things.
Certain dates. Certain places.

Two weeks before the accident, with another couple, we went to their beach condo.
We celebrated Roger's 34th birthday. His last.
We joked that I "made" him a cake from the local grocery store. With layers.
We watched some of the summer Olympics.
We learned another couple of friends were engaged.
We went to the beach.
We hang by the pool.
We had lunch at this famous deli.
We went to a seafood restaurant.
We played board games.

Some times when I remember images of Roger, I see him in this condo.
Sitting at the bar while he looked at his cake.
Looking at me as I take his picture.

For two years, I have not been back.
I knew this would be a hard first "task" to check off the list.

This past weekend, Mr. X and I were invited to the condo to hang out with a friend who moved away a few months ago and was visiting.
I started to get anxious Friday during the day.
Friday night I started to have trouble breathing.
I could not sleep.

Saturday morning, Mr. X and I rode down the same roads.
I rode quietly in the car.
Memories started to rush in and cloud my head.
The tears started to fall.
I did not want to be sad girl.  No. No. No.
I wanted to be happy and see my friends.
I forced the tears to stop.

As we entered the condo, it smelled the same as (almost) two years ago.
The furniture is the same.
Decor is the same.
He sat over there on the love seat.
He took a nap on that sofa.
He played charades over near the bar.
Roger. Roger. Roger.
My eyes started to well up but I forced myself to stop.
No crying!!
I tried not to look deeply into anyone's eyes.
I tried to smile.
I tried not to think.
I tried not to remember.

Part of me just wanted to curl up in these spaces with these memories, alone.
Try to remember every detail.
Try to savor each memory.

But instead I put on my happy girl mask.
As long as I can keep it in place the better.
At least for the next few weeks.

Sunday, July 18, 2010


In one of my groups of friends, I am the oldest female.
I was the first of the group to get married.
And if movies and stories were any indicator, I should be the first to have a baby.

But I stand three months from thirty.
No longer a married female out of the group.
And of course no baby.

The first baby of our group is surrounded by adoring "aunts".
He is an amazing baby.
He is cute.
He is good.
And makes all of us want to have children.

I cannot help to think I am way behind the rest of the group.
They are all married for multiple years now.
I am far away from being married again.
They are all on the crest of starting to have children.
I am far, far away from having a baby.
They get to enjoy the word husband in a way I can't.

I cannot help but think my next wedding will be just another wedding they have to attend.
I cannot help but think my pregnancy will be just another day in the park for them once I am there.
And I definitely cannot see my child surrounded by this group of these adoring friends.
As one of my friends nicely put it, "By the time the last of us has a child it won't be a big deal."

I cried on the hour ride home last night.
They are completely right.
By most time tables, I will be the last to have children.
And my children will just be another kid on the block.
It is only natural not to be amused by the old trick.

I should have been deciding this year whether or not to have children.
I should have been trying this year.
But instead I am years behind the crowd.
And it hurts.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

So Jaded

Most people live life like their are immortal.
They ignore the fact we are mortal beings.
At least while they are young.
Because only old people die, right? 
Yeah right...

I finally took myself to my lawyer's office this afternoon.
I finally started the will/trust process.  
Because I am constantly thinking I might die.
Maybe next week.
Maybe in a year.
But I need to be prepared.  
I have had this worry in the last (almost) two years of what will happened if I die tomorrow.

As I spoke to the lawyer, most of my questions were "If I die next week..."
"If I die next year..."
"What happens to _______  if I die before next month?"

My lawyer finally says "You know, more than likely, you are going to live for years and years."
"You are not going to die soon statistically speaking."  
"Most of my clients I have to remind them of their mortality but you are living like you are going to die any day now."

I am just jaded.
So jaded.
My life as I knew it ended abruptly.  
Roger was full of life.  Healthy and just beginning a new chapter.
And it ended in an instant.
No warning.
No blinking lights.
No years of waiting for the moment.

What makes me so immortal?
What makes me so special that I will live till I am ninety?
Why will I not end the same?
Why will my life be different?
My life could end just as quickly.
I could die young too.
I guess I am jaded that it is not impossible.  

So jaded.  

Sunday, July 11, 2010

In a Moment

(Almost) two years ago, Grace and I were sitting with one of the cousins, Ralph, in a small consultation room at the hospital.
Grace had just heard the doctor's spill about Roger.
Roger was going to die.
We had to tell the rest of the family.
Ralph was one of the first (I think).
I cannot remember what time of day it was.
Hospitals do not have lots of windows.  Especially waiting rooms.  Especially this room.
Grace and I were sitting on one couch.
Ralph was sitting across from us on another couch.
I cannot remember if anyone else was in the room at that moment.

Ralph was close with Roger.
They had worked together a few times on different projects.
They had grown up together.
And they were basically the same as brothers.
I remember Ralph's face in that moment.
I could see his heart breaking.
All of our hearts were breaking.
Tears and sadness warped our faces.
In that moment, I could not imagine ever having fun or being happy again.

Last night, we were all together again.
[Not for the first time in the last two years.]
We were out celebrating another friend's accomplishment.
Standing on the dance floor in a small circle together.
We were smiling.
We were dancing.
We were laughing with each other.

And in a moment, I felt our combined happiness.
We were all okay.
We had survived enough to have fun again.
To enjoy ourselves again.
I looked at Grace's face. She was smiling and happy.
I looked at Ralph's face. He was smiling and happy.
I was smiling and happy.

Tears started to fill my eyes.
We had survived.
We could love Roger, miss him, and still enjoy ourselves and each other.
Yes, the tears were partly of sadness but also of joy and unbelief.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Recently I have been scared.
Actually, I guess more like paranoid.

As the weather has warmed up, and summer is officially here.
As August creeps closer.
I keep thinking someone is going to die.
Someone I love.
Someone I care about.
Someone close to me.

And not in a normal way.
In a car accident specifically.
There is blood usually.

I do not feel paralyzed by this fear but if someone is late.
Or I do not hear from a friend.
It is my first thought.
They are dead.

I am especially scared of Mr. X dying again.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Two Relationships

Supa Fresh has a blog page on facebook.
She gives a thought or question of the day then asks for others' thoughts.
I sometimes respond and sometimes just read the responses.
As usual, the responses vary with each question.  

A while back she asked about our experiences with our first contact with a new dating partner.  
For myself, I have never felt guilt about being with Mr. X or the few other gentlemen I dated.  
I have never felt like I was cheating.
I have never felt like Roger was angry with me for falling in love again.  

However, recently, I have noticed perhaps why.
Not on a conscious level.  
Not often.
Not always.
Not even fifty percent of the time.
Only a very slight amount of the time, I feel like I am still in a relationship with Roger.

I have found myself doing things because Roger would want me to.  
Or because he liked a certain thing.
Or because he liked something a certain way.

For example, a few weeks ago there was a turtle in the driveway behind my house.  
I knew it was more than likely the turtle would get run over at some point during the day.
Roger loved turtles.
I love animals too but this was a turtle.
Turtles were Roger's thing more than mine
I had to save him.  
For Roger.

Then, a few months ago, a friend of Mr. X was splitting from his wife.  
He was setting up his own apartment and did not have much stuff.
I decided to give him a few Coke glasses and an old kitchen table of Roger's.  
A table Roger loved.
A table I did not like much.
Roger redid the seats with upholstery he picked. 
The friend got back with his wife and God only knows what he did with the table.
Or the other things.
And it makes my heart sink.
I feel like I was disappointing Roger.  

Same thing happened on Thursday morning.  
I had a lot of extra household items from Mr. X moving in.
Some his, some mine, and some Roger's.  
I called Amvets to come pick up the stuff.
This young guy came who just basically threw everything into the back of the truck.
My stomach was in a knot. 

I have to remind myself that I am not in a relationship with Roger anymore.
This does not happen often.
But just a sliver of the time.  
Just a slip into old habits, I guess.
Just for a moment.  

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

My Arm

I hate the scar on my forearm from the accident.
For some reason, especially in the last few months, it seems to be in view all the time.
Every time I look down, it is there.
Every time I look in the mirror, it is there again.
Staring at me.

I thought it would look different by now.
I thought it would blend in more with my skin.
I thought the hair would grow normally like the rest of my arm.
Instead it is still very pink and darker skin tone.
The hair grows backwards.
The skin pulls strangely when I rotate my arm.
There is a strange light pink line that goes toward my hand from it.

The scar reminds me that I survived.
That my injuries were recoverable.
Roger did not survive and his injuries were too great.
With this scar staring at me, I will always have to live with some remembrance of the accident day on a constant basis.
Of course, I would probably remember every day anyway.
But the scar makes me think about the accident versus remembering Roger on everyday before August 22nd.

I have tried creams.
I take vitamins which did initially help some.
I just want it to be less obvious.
To be something I do not notice ALL the time.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

MySpace Fail

I decided about a month ago I finally wanted to delete Roger's MySpace account.
I was getting strange comments and messages.
Plus, it was just starting to bug me that his profile was out there.
With pictures and his words floating in cyberspace.

In the two years I have had to deal with estate issues, deleting a MySpace account is up there in the top ten annoying and frustrating things I had to do.
I had access to his profile.
I could log in so of course I had access.
So you would think I could easily delete his profile.
Nope. Not at all.
I do not have access to his old AOL email account.
So I cannot complete the confirmation process of deleting it.

I emailed their helpdesk.
I needed to make a copy of his death certificate and prove my relationship with him.
I found a few moments yesterday (the joyous things I get to do in my spare time) and I scanned in a copy of his death certificate into a PDF.
Finally, I thought, I can get this done.

The email address I was asked to send it to does not accept this type of attachments per the automatic response.
So I turned my husband's death certificate into a JPEG.
Same damn response.
The actual person kept replying they had not received any attachment.
I replied their firewall was blocking the attachments, dimwits.

The attachment must be smaller than 4MB.
I edited my husband's death certificate in Photoshop to make it smaller.
Now that's not an odd sentence.
Sent again.
Same fucking response!

Real person replied.
Just fax it over.
Or put "Remove Profile" in his "About me" section.
No fax access. Just the "Remove Profile".
"We will submit the profile for removal consideration."
Consideration? CONSIDERATION!?!

Of all the crappy things I have been charged to do in this whole process.
I swear, fighting with MySpace has once again confirmed my dislike for the site.
Where is that dislike button?

My own MySpace is now gone gone gone.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

365 Days of Star

A few months ago, I saw the movie (500) Days of Summer.  
Today Mr. X and I celebrated his 365th day of Star.  

It is hard to believe I have been dating for a year now.

But I am glad.
I am lucky to have such a great guy who understands.
Who lets me cry.
Who lets me laugh.
Who does not judge me when my widow humor gets the best of me.  

I am lucky to have a guy who boldly meets those who loved Roger. 
To have a guy who is okay with me saying "Roger" every once in a while.
A guy who will listen to my Roger stories and really listen.

Although Mr. X does not read this blog, I would like to thank him for 365 days of love and understanding.  

Monday, June 21, 2010


Lately quite a few people have told me I look happy.
And I am happy.  
I do not want people to think I am not happy.
I am definitely in a better place emotionally.


And maybe this is selfish but sometimes I am afraid to say "I am happy."
I am afraid people will suddenly be like "Oh good, I can stop asking about you and go on with my own life."
I am afraid people will think I do not think of Roger or still love Roger.
I am afraid people will think the grief is over.

I still have sleepless nights.  
I still have a permanent video tape that runs through my head of the accident.
And another one of Roger actually dying.  
It has recently been on almost full time.

There is still a part of me that is sad.
I still cry on a fairly regular basis.
But I do not talk about it.
Or even let anyone, including Mr. X, see me cry.  

I try to think back before all of this.
Was I ever truly "happy" before?
Did I answer "I am happy" before?
In fact, I did say it before.  
But back then I did HATE my job.
I did have insomnia every Sunday night.
And I was not completely happy with my body.
But I still answered "I am happy".  

I almost feel like people are tired of me.
They want me to be happy so they can feel released.  
And part of me wants to give it to them.
And part of me does not.