My emotional volcano is about to erupt. I can feel the pressure building. Bits of lava stream down the sides (of my cheeks) from time to time. I am trying to hold off the explosion but, as the 21st nears, I can feel the inevitable.
Wednesday’s support group session was good. I started out saying that my main agenda item was to ensure that the kids’ issues were taken care of. As the session continued, I think that it was evident that I had much of my own baggage to deal with.
Six months has passed and still there is so much sadness and guilt remaining within me. There is anger too. It’s the anger that I am most afraid of. But it seeps out no matter how much I try to hold it back.
This morning, for example, I yelled at the insurance claims adjuster after I gave my statement of a car accident that I got had on the way to my support group. I should have called her back yesterday; I would have been nicer to her. Instead I sensed a tone of judgement in her voice when she went through the “statutes” of why I was at fault. I probably was, but I didn’t want to hear about “statutes.” I let her have it, telling her that her job was to be neutral and just take down the information. Just moments after getting off of the call, and realizing how out of hand I was, I wasn’t sure if the tone was really there or if I just heard it because I was having a bad morning. But , that’s not all.
I need only smell the smoke of a lit cigarette and I feel the range of anger building within me, like a volcano about to erupt. Tom quit smoking 15 years ago. Did it help? Apparently not. It was lung cancer that killed him. I guess I never actually said what he died of. It was lung cancer that spread to his brain, and shoulder, and shins, and knees, and hips, and who knows where else. Now, when I see old men and women, who have obviously smoked from their teens well into retirement, and who are still kicking (and smoking) – I can’t help but be angry. It’s not fair! Why Tom?, I ask. Why not them?
I am also still angry at the doctor who told us that Tom would live for another year. He gave us hope when I was thinking that we had about 4-6 months. We were somewhat relieved to have more time that we expected. We told the kids, through tears, that we had a whole year to be together. We looked forward to creating some happy memories. Then he died (two weeks later). I feel robbed. Yes, we were robbed of sharing the joys of watching the kids create successes, and from growing old together. But we were also robbed of the truth and being able to prepare the kids adequately. And prepare ourselves too.
What’s more…I feel guilty for wishing that he would die already when I couldn’t bear to watch him suffer anymore. Can you believe that? I wanted to not feel like I was dying too. Sometimes, I still feel that way. I know that a part of me died with him that day. Now, 6 months later, all I want is to feel alive again.