This may be the hardest post I’ve ever had to write. I know I don’t *have* to write it but I feel I should. After the years you’ve followed me you deserve an explanation of sorts as to why I dropped off a cliff and my blog petered out over the last few years.
I didn’t fall out of love with blogging as some speculated or any of those other crazy rumours I heard about myself – interestingly out of all the stories I heard, no-one got it right – because no-one expects it to happen to them I suppose.
In short, my husband died.
My strong, handsome, funny husband with the roaring laugh, the rib cracking hugs, the best tea making skills and the kind word for everyone, is gone. It’s been two months now and I still can’t process it. It feels surreal and yet gut wrenchingly real all at the same time. I alternate between feeling numb and wanting to scream so hard it hurts. He was in my life for almost half my life, how can he not be there anymore?
The reason for my lack of blogging, social media or interactions in general is simply because he asked me to keep it a secret until it was over. The last couple of years have been full of hospital visits, surgeries, treatments, drugs, doctors, care, grief and everything else that comes with it. It’s very hard to write about your life, document your day or make lighthearted chit chat with people when you can’t touch on the fact that the ar$e has just been ripped out of your life. How could I post about my coffee while sitting next to him for his 15 hour treatments. Show you my shoes on the way to visit him after surgery or show you all how I desperately crammed in work after getting back from a 12 hour hospital visit before grabbing a few hours sleep and going to do it all again?
I wanted to post so many times about the triumphs, how he regained his memory and learned to walk again twice, got close to beating it 6 times, returned to work a month after coming out of a 3 month hospital stay, learned all those things we take for granted over and over again, but he was convinced he would be ‘better’ again soon and he didn’t want anyone to feel sorry for him or give him special treatment. He hated to be a burden. He wrestled inside with me caring for him and yet not wanting anyone else to be around. Knowing I was exhausted from 20 hour days but not wanting anyone else to get into our little bubble. He finally confided in a handful of people but that brought more to deal with. Tragedy does funny things to people and it wasn’t easy to be handed yet more on top of what he was going through but we pulled together more than ever before.
He told me to go on as normally as possible, I pasted on a smile at meetings and trade shows, all the while itching to race out the door and get back to him, but he was right, I needed to deal with the practical things as well as the other things.
It was tough but we managed to keep him at home as much as we possibly could. Snuggling up next to him at night with Fuzzybutt on our feet made it all worthwhile. There were decisions and fights and frustrations over treatments, drugs, care and more and I kept as much of it away from him as possible so he could focus on getting better, his fight was much bigger than mine.
For the last few years I prepared myself for this possibility, for the last 10 months I knew it was more than a possibility, that it could and ,eventually, would happen any day. I went back for one more kiss every time I left, I said everything I need to say, I took him his favourite food every day until he could no longer eat it. Even when he was away from home, I made sure I’d be there as he woke up so it was ‘normal’ We watched James Bond films in bed on Saturdays, had coffee together in the morning, I cut his hair, held his hand, took Fuzzybutt for visits, gave him updates on the office. I cried outside and at home, not letting him see me upset, I never wanted him to know how bad it was. Anything and everything I could think of to make it the best it could be.
All the time my wonderful team held down the fort, kept my secrets and pretended not to see me cry in hallways. They dealt with as much as they could, freeing me up to spend all day with him until he fell asleep and giving me the best chance to cram as much in as I could when I got home and before I collapsed from exhaustion. These situations truly show you the best and worst in people.
So you see, my secret was a big one, I’m no good at all at lying and I didn’t have time to fake anything, every moment mattered, every moment of mine was his. I hope you’ll understand. There are things I’ve learned along the way that I’ll share over time but generally this will go back to being our creative place of pretty things and inspiration.
Thank you for being patient with me, I look forward to taking you all on my next chapter.