Friday, March 27, 2015
Today would have been my husband's 68th birthday. I was slightly older than he was.
I am often surprised at how much I miss him. We had been divorced for more years than we were married when he died.
We did not have a bitter divorce. At the same time neither of us was happy with the other. And he remained until he died the person who knew what buttons to push to irritate me.
Because we share four children and all the grandchildren we were forever connected. We chose to be civil. Children even if they are grown should not be placed in the position of peacemakers or worse, having to take sides.
At the same time my children are not stupid. They knew if we were at odds about something. I felt free to say that I was angry with their father because they knew that I did not expect them to be angry with me. I am reasonably sure they felt the same way with their father.
I could even vent a bit. If the children stopped me by saying, "That's my dad you're talking about." I shut my mouth. I have friends and family I could rant to.
The main thing was that half of what my children are they got from their father. My children are amazing. How could I deny any part of them? How could I be guilty of making them believe that half of what they are is not worthy? They have some remarkable traits that come from their father and some that come from me. All parts make these exceptional people.
My husband and I experienced so much together. The most important of course was our children. But we had friends, family, and at times we worked together. We relied on each other to defend and protect. We had fun. We had sorrow. We faced it together.
It is sad when a marriage dies. We did try to resurrect it. It did not work.
When I learned that my husband was dying I took it in stride. He was far too young and vital. I even told him he was too ornery to die. That was when he called me to tell me the doctors told him he only had a few weeks left.
When my son called to tell me that his father had died I already knew. When I called the rest of my children they knew. He was such a force in all our lives that we just knew.
What did surprise me was how much his death affected me. It took me a long time to gather myself so I could be there for my children.
I began writing this as a tribute to him on his birthday. It seems that it has turned into something else.
I guess the thing is that I have my memories both good and bad of our lives together and separately. Most of all I remember the person who should not have been taken so soon.