As expected, I’ve fallen far short of the “official” 50,000-word goal of National Novel Writing Month. But I’ve written more in November than I did the month before, and I still have a few days left. So from that perspective, I’ve already gotten what I had hoped to get out of this. It’s all very rough, and will need more work, but it’s progress.
As for my personal life, well … last week sucked. I’m not sure why everything hit me so much harder, but I’ve got lots of theories. It could be that it’s been a year since Amy first started showing symptoms of cancer, even though we thought it was just spine trouble back then. Or it could be that I’ve finished all of the immediate work I had to do in terms of cleanup and sorting through paperwork and belongings, and now I’m more aware of the emptiness. And of course we’ve got the holidays coming up, as well as her birthday…
We’re gonna be taking a vacation this year over Christmas. Better to get away and do something fun and new than to wake up Christmas morning and have to deal with everything being so wrong.
Side note: vacation planning is hard. But I’ve got flights, rental car, three different hotels, and reservations on activities that required ’em. I think there will be really cool things for all three of us to enjoy.
The whole time I was planning things, I was wishing we’d done this before, when Amy was still with us. But I know she’d be happy we were getting to go. I suspect a lot of things in the foreseeable future will be bittersweet that way.
Friday will be three months since Amy’s death. I still think about her throughout the day, every day and every night. I hug the memories of being with her, and I wonder what life is going to look like in the future.
I think that may be another reason last week was so hard: the idea that this is it. This is what my life is from now on. Trying to be the best parent I can, to take care of my kids and justify Amy’s trust in me. I think I’m doing pretty well, but it’s exhausting. I’m behind on emails and other correspondence because I just haven’t had the spoons for it all.
I miss my wife, and I’m lonely. I’ve realized that the Venn diagram of these two things isn’t quite a perfect circle, which opens up other questions about whether one day I’d be ready for another relationship, and all of the complicated guilt and loneliness and hope and confusion that comes from thinking about that.
It feels like it would almost be a kind of polyamorous relationship. I’ll never stop loving and missing Amy. But maybe someday I’d be able to love someone else, too?
Or maybe not. It’s a bizarre thought to even poke at.
All I know is that right now, things are hard. They’ve been that way for a year. And I expect they’re going to stay that way for a long time yet.