Author Topic: August  (Read 452 times)


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« on: August 26, 2017, 07:06:04 PM »
I still check in here from time to time, although I rarely post.

This place (or YWBB, the former “this place”) saved my life.  I give honorable mention to some of my friends in the real world, but the wids were the ones that carried me, pushed me, held my hand and walked with me over a terrain that no one else understood. I’m glad you have all found this place. It is nice to not feel alone.

My last post here was in May.  May and August are my two hard times. May is my birthday and my anniversary, August is the month that he died.

I don’t understand why flipping that calendar page and seeing “MAY” and “AUGUST” still is so hard. In May I was bitching about being 19 years older than Jim. (Yes, I was a cradle robber, but how did I end up 19 years older?) I was pathetic and pitiful in May. It felt as if my entire life was a useless, pathetic, piece of crap. But I’ve been widowed long enough to know that this was a temporary thing. A flipping of the calendar page thing.

This was part of my May post:
  I will soon be 67.  My dead husband is still 48.  He will always be 48 and I will just keep getting older.
    I look at his picture and see a young man.  I look in the mirror and see an old woman.
    This was a part of grief that I didn’t understand at first. Not only are they dead, but they stay dead.  Not only do they stay dead, but you have to keep getting older without them.  Not only do you keep getting older but you have to suck it up and pretend that your life is something you are still living.
    Mostly I am not such a pathetic, useless, sorrowful piece of human flotsam, drifting through the currents of my life.
    But my dead husband is 48 and I am almost 67.
    Yes, I agree that I sounded pretty depressed. Perhaps overly dramatic but the key phrase is Mostly I am not such a pathetic, useless, sorrowful piece of human flotsam, drifting through the currents of my life.
    I turned 67 and a few days passed and I’m fine.   (Is that right??? Am I really 67?  How did THAT happen?)  I will probably be fine until August when he will have been dead 11 years. So I will write something and I will feel broken and destroyed until a few days pass and I will be OK

        Do you know what month we are in?

        Yep.  August.

        I wrote some depressing piece of drivel (yes, I even used the words broken and destroyed) on my blog, but don’t feel like posting it here. Because I really will be fine.  And so will you.

        Instead, I took a walk down Memory Lane this evening, looking at August and things I’ve written in the past.  I think I wrote with optimism.  Not quite Little Susie Sunshine, but still, when I look back, I see someone that believed she would survive.  And she did.

        Poem on the Second Anniversary of Your Death

        It’s like picking a scab.
        Each time its almost healed
        I rub and scratch until the blood flows.
        I bleed for you. I bleed for me.

        Sometimes I just bump into things
        And knock it open.
        But mostly I pick at it.

        I know songs that can rip it open,
        I have photographs I hide away until I want to see what I have lost.
        And there is still that little seed of doubt that I was good enough for you.
        That seed I can plant and water with blood until it grows so tall I cannot see the top.

        If the scab heals, all that’s left is a scar.
        Scars can fade away.

        I would have died for you.
        I would have died with you.
        That would have been easy.
        The hard part is letting the scab heal and believing you won’t fade away.

        Widow’s Weeds
        widow's weeds - a black garment (dress) worn by a widow as a sign of mourning

        I wear my widow’s weeds.
        Although I envy those who wore the black veil, that was a different time.
        I could not see my computer through the veil.

        I often picture myself in a long black dress, but I haven’t worn a dress for years.
        My life is more jeans and tee shirts.
        I have a black tee shirt, but it doesn’t fit anymore.

        Still, I wear my widow’s weeds.
        Visible only to me, unless you count the black Converse high top sneakers.
        The ones he bought me because I always wanted a pair when I was a kid.

        The kid never got them. The wife did.
        The widow wears them.

        Widow’s weeds.


        I sometimes told you that you saved my life.
        You would grin and make a joke.
        Or in a more serious mood say
        “No you saved your own life,
        I was just with you when you did it.”

        I guess it was a little of both.
        But either way I am still here
        And you are not.

        My life was in your hands.
        I put it there and chose to keep it there.
        Hands that sheltered but never held too tight.
        Hands one could curl up in and feel safe.

        I am still here
        And you are not.

        I am the trapeze flyer without a net,
        The baby bird pushed out of the nest,
        The boat riding the rapids, heading for the waterfall.

        You are not here
        I am.

        The hands fell away but I can walk on air.


        I’m a silent beggar,
        Standing in front of tomorrow
        Holding my cup gently so I don’t spill anything.

        Sometimes my cup is half full
        And sometimes half empty
        But either way, it’s always the same.

        Maybe I need to shake my cup up and down,
        Make a little noise,
        Rattle my change,
        Risk spilling what I have.

        If you don’t risk losing your change

        Nothing will.

        Planting a Life

        You can’t grow much in rocks and clay.
        It’s too hard for the roots to grow down deep.
        A little compost helps.
        Compost made from that pile of discards.
        The things you peeled away,
        The leftover scraps of what used to be good,
        The things you thought were of no use anymore.

        At first it’s just a pile of garbage,
        But throw it all together.
        Let it sit and stir it once in awhile.
        Add more garbage when you have it.
        Eventually it all breaks down.

        Mix a little compost in that hard packed clay soil
        That nothing can grow in.
        Dig down deep.
        Throw away any rocks that you find.
        Plant something and hope it grows.

        But I don’t recognize these crops springing up
        From what used to be barren soil.
        I’m harvesting things I never planted.
        Sweet or sour?
        Annual or perennial?
        I don’t know what to make from them.

        That’s OK because I mostly cook without a recipe,
        Just throwing things together until they taste good.
        If it’s not fit to eat, I’ll just throw it in the compost bin again.


        Today is the day where all things are measured from. There is before Jim died and after Jim died.  There is the mounting irritability and tears just beneath the surface as August 28th draws near. There is the sigh of relief when this day is over.

        This is my New Year’s Eve. Tomorrow begins another year. A fresh start. A year full of possibilities.

        I think of Jim frequently.  He just sort of lives in my mind.  Not intrusive but always nearby, ready for me to tell him something, or smiling with me at a shared memory.  But it is not the real Jim.  It is some image of Jim that I can carry around with me and take out and talk to.  I guess he is like an imaginary friend.

        My imaginary friend, Jim, is someone to talk to that shares the same past. The real Jim is kept in another place in my heart and I don’t let him out very often. The loss of the real Jim is not something I can face day after day. At least not while I am trying to rebuild a life. The real Jim was so much more wonderful than the one that lives in my mind. The loss of the real Jim can still feel like being punched in the stomach.

        But on this one day each year, I look him in the eye and say:  “Yes, I see you.
        I remember who you really were.  I know you.  I still love you.”

        So I guess in the end, after all these words, that is all I want to say.

        “Yes, I see you.
        I remember who you really were.  I know you.  I still love you.”


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Re: August
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2017, 07:24:23 PM »
Beautifully said. Wishing peace for you as you enter this time of year yet once more.


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  • widowed 2012
Re: August
« Reply #2 on: August 27, 2017, 10:01:09 AM »
Your always beautiful posts have helped me immeasurably these past five years. Thank you for that. But I sure wish you'd never had to write any of them.
It is a fearful thing to love what Death can touch.


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Re: August
« Reply #3 on: August 27, 2017, 05:22:19 PM »
Jesus, Euf. You can still bring me to my knees with what you write and now it is finally a good thing.

Those bloody damn days that we lived through.


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  • Widowed 2013
Re: August
« Reply #4 on: August 27, 2017, 06:09:58 PM »
Wow.  Euf your writing and poems are amazing.  Thank you.
Hugs on these rough August days. 
I don't want it to be his legacy that his death destroyed me.
I need to honour his life by rebuilding my life.