Friday, May 17, 2013

Happy Birthday .....

When I was younger, May was always a special month. My birthday, my Dad's birthday and 2 of my sisters' birthdays all fell within one week. And Mother's Day usually landed close by, too.  Lots of celebrating and good memories.

But since Vern died, it seems that May takes me to a dark place. That long, incredibly hard cancer journey began in May. And even though it's been 7 years (how is that possible?) I can still see in my mind's eye the day when we first heard the word cancer. I can see us in the dr's office looking at the scans, hear the dr tell us how bad it is, that immediate surgery is needed and I must check him into the hospital now. I recall driving down the street towards the hospital, but then pulling off into a residential area. I found a shaded spot and pulled up next to the curb. Holding hands. Silence. Tears. Drawing strength from one another to face the challenge.  During the 4+ year cancer battle I don't recall thinking much about May. Or any specific dates. It was such an effort to just keep doing what needed to be done. But now ... now that I'm alone ... May seems to be the month I will find myself crying at the drop of a hat ... songs, comments, stories ... it doesn't take much to get the tears flowing. I'm not consciously thinking about it, but it's there ... those memories ... lurking just below the surface. And I can tell you that spending a birthday without Vern is just not something I can enjoy.  I miss him. And it's just a reminder that one more year has passed without him.

I sometimes get so tired of feeling it's my responsibility to always be the positive one, to always be strong, to always set a good example of how to survive losing the love of your life. Really tired. But I can't help myself. It's who I am. And who I am is because of the years and the love I shared with Vern. So I keep on keeping on.

So while this has been kind of a tough day ... there have been some special moments that I am grateful for:
  • Had a wonderful long lunch with my friend and fellow widow, Linda. 
  • Received lots of online birthday wishes.
  • Saw a couple of posts from widows who have appreciated my comments and support.
  • Had a nice phone conversation with my "little" brother and one of my sisters.
  • Received a lovely bouquet of tulips from my brother and his sweet wife.
And I smiled when I saw Google wishing me a Happy Birthday.

So I made it through today fairly well, actually. I got out of my pajamas - that's an improvement from previous years. And I ventured outside the house ... another improvement. And it's one day closer to the end of May.


Anonymous said...

Dianne, I am so proud of you. I can't even imagine. But ready your blog always gives me hope that I would be able to deal with such a loss with as much strength and class as you have had. I am sure it is very hard to "Hold your head up, be strong, and drive on." But you do, and for that you are more amazing than you think you are. There are many that would crawl into despair and never come out. You try to help others, always. You put one foot in front of the other and get through the day, no matter how hard it is. And after all this time, you still take the time to let us know how you are, by posting here on your blog.
Thank you for sharing your inner most thoughts. I know that when you look toward the future that life seems too long before you can be with you Love again. In that time take solace in that you help so many and when you do see Vern the next time it will be for ever.
Again, it is so easy for all of us to say these things when we haven't had to be in your shoes.

tccomments2013 said...

dear dianne,

now i can understand so much of what you write about; so instead of the usual birthday greeting, let me wish you a year filled with hope, many happy surprises, and feeling purposeful and appreciated. i wish i could reach through the screen and give you a warm hug - but hope you can feel the cyber one i am sending.

love, XOXO

karen, TC

Anonymous said...

Keep on keeping on. A quote my grandmother use to say...and it became a family saying. And it does apply to the life of widows...doesn't it?

I love the all the truths that you that you can share your fears & unhappiness as well as all of your positive thoughts & actions with us.

For all of those of us following in your footsteps....thank you and wishing you a bright & beautiful year.

Angie Murray

Susie Hemingway said...

The day is over now for another year and maybe just maybe this year will bring you to a better place. I feel your pain in this post and so wish the clock could be turned back to life before when your beloved was close by you, but Dianne he has never really left, nor will he, for he is safely tucked-in your heart with all those beautiful memories that are yours and his alone. 41 years a life time.So many never experience such love. We were so lucky to have such good men come into our lives,continue well with peace, solace, strength and joy dear friend. Hugs.

Sue Burke Lombard said...

MAY seems to be a dark month for me too with Mother's Day, my husbands birthday and mine. I miss celebrating his birthday. I miss celebrating with him my being the mother of his children. I miss feeling special and loved on my birthday. I miss the love that only a husband can make a wife feel. I hoped this year would not affect me as time has moved on. I was frustrated with the slump I found myself in. Sorry it hit you hard too but I "get it". All I can say is MAYbe. MAybe next year it will be easier for us. MAYbe one month the triggers won't strike us as hard. MAYbe one day we will find we aren't trying to be strong...we just are. Just MAYbe.