I'm sitting in my favorite coffeeshop this morning, both kids in school after endless colds and runny noses. I have needed this morning out for weeks and I'm so happy I'm finally getting it. I've been in a rut for a while, tired of being a domestic diva, longing for a job out of the house, desperately needing a change. Trouble is, I don't know what sort of change I need. Maybe just a getaway to someplace new, maybe something more than that.
The other day, I had a fight with my husband. I retreated to my room in tears, crying in a way I don't cry all that often anymore——the great, wrenching sobs accompanied by utter despair. The sort of crying I did a lot after Ben died, and I wondered, after I'd stopped crying, how I survived his death. How I survived those weeks and months of desperation and sorrow? How did I survive the pain? I'd forgotten just how awful it was, the depths of it——oh, don't get me wrong, I remember it was awful, but I'd forgotten the feeling of crying, grieving, missing so intensely, with all my body.
How does anyone survive it?
The thing is, I did. We do. In part, you survive it because there is no other choice: you can opt out of life, kill yourself, become catatonic——but if you have people who love you, whom you love, you know it's not an option. And yes, there were times when I wanted only to die, so I could be with Ben, but I couldn't leave my family with that pain. I chose to keep going, I chose to find my happiness again, hard as it was. And no, I'm not always happy. But no one is. Everyone, sooner or later, will feel the pain of a broken heart; none of us are immune. I still miss him. I still grieve him. And I still want him back. But what I have? These children who have lived, this life——this beautiful, amazing, heartbreaking life. I'm grateful for it, in all its ups and downs, grateful for those nonfat vanilla lattes I dream about while at home doing my diva thing.