It is hard to describe the opposing feelings within me. Sadness and loss, are intensified, even though I've been saying "goodbye" to Gary for a long time. The hopes of him smiling at me, or saying a word, or noticing if I walk through the room, are over. But now there is something new. Feelings of joy and satisfaction, for Gary's new condition. He is finally "home" and I am so relieved and thrilled for him. There is a new happy freedom for me too, as I can come and go, without giving thought to arranging for caregivers or concerns for Gary's well being.
He is fine now, "extremely fine," but I miss him. When his body was taken away, it was really hard for me. It was the form that his soul was housed in for nearly 65 years, and I loved the whole man. Inside and out. The finality of death added a new level of sadness to my life. It was just the shell he lived in, but I've been one flesh with him for 40 years, and that is over. "Widow" is a new title for me, but I'm Gary's widow, and he has shaped me. We shaped each other. God used us in each others' lives to cause growth. I'm forever grateful to him.
In this odd little time between Gary's death and his Memorial Service, coming up on Saturday, I've been crying and laughing. I find myself habitually looking in our room to see how he is, feeling strange at the grocery store, when I don't need to pick up Gary's foods, and wishing he was here to talk to even though he couldn't respond. But preparing for Saturday, is new and different, and I'm loving going through the old photos and memories as I write his eulogy. It's such a neat way to receive comfort. After next week, I'm sure I will start to explore the "new normal," but for now, I'm doing ok, and enjoying the busy preparations.
Thank you all who are so lovingly caring for our family during this time. My heart is empty and full and I'm ok with that.
You are most welcome to join our family as we celebrate and remember Gary's life on Saturday, May 30, at Grace Community Church, (13248 Roscoe Blvd., Sun Valley, CA 91352) at 9:30 am in the Worship Center. Reception following.