I have been heavy hearted since then, and I had stupid, weird, upsetting dreams last night. When Michael wasn't here with me in the past, if I had a bad dream I would call him and we'd talk until I felt better. Now there is no number I can call to reach him. That's not to say that I don't talk to him, but the conversation is terribly one sided. How I miss the sound of his voice.
Speaking of his voice and phones, it was a sad day recently when his cell phone was deactivated. If you knew my husband, then you knew how attached he was to his cell phone - especially that iPhone. He had so many apps. And being the social butterfly he was, that phone rang all day long. I asked for it to be deactivated because I didn't want to pay for it when I didn't really need it anymore, but it made me sad to do so. That's one of the few things I've dealt with of his. I am not ready to go through his clothing or all the boxes in the garage. Not at all.
Anyway, earlier today I was completing my "daily exercise" in my Grief Share workbook. At the conclusion of the exercise there was a section that encouraged the reader to remember that grief is unique and that the length and time one grieves is dependent on several factors:
- the type of relationship you had with the one you lost - my husband
- how close you were - he was my everything, second only to Jesus
- the manner of death of your loved one - prolonged illness
- how strong a support system you have - I have a wonderful family and friends
- how well you deal with trials and conflicts - I try to see things from an eternal perspective
- the number and intensity of past losses and whether you've healed from them - my grandparents, and a former coworker and college classmate who committed suicide
- your relationship with the Lord - this makes all the difference for me as I believe he works all things together for good
These factors do impact my grief. Michael was my husband and my best friend. He was always just a phone call away when we couldn't be together. His illness made me think about his mortality months and months ago. I cried hard over what I was losing many times before he went to Heaven, oftentimes with him. I began thinking about my future without him many weeks before he passed. So, my grief did not begin on March 7th. Even though I was holding onto hope for his complete healing, I knew that it was likely he would succumb to his disease. It happens all the time. Cancer is pure evil. The only thing that gives me hope for the moment and for tomorrow is knowing that God is good all the time. My situation, my pain, my loneliness, my loss, my every thought are known to Him. I may not know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future and He is worthy of my trust.
Nevertheless, the house is too quiet in the evenings, the bed is too big, and there's too much time between now and when I'll see Michael again.