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Monday, January 23, 2012

Take a step...

“We must be willing to let go of the life we had planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” – Joseph Campbell

This process is a constant struggle of moving forward and letting go. And in the moments where I’m forced to recognize that I have to let go a little bit more I get scared and emotional.

I can’t believe that it was almost 2 years ago already that Andie and I bought the land to build our dream house on. And almost a year ago that I did the consultation with the builder about how to site the house and what trees to clear off the land. A year ago I thought I was ready to jump in full force and build the house. But after that consultation I got scared again because moving forward and building the house we had planned without him felt like too much to take on by myself at the time. So I put the project on hold for a while.

But I’m feeling the itch again…there is so much I’ve had to let go of since he died. I’ve let go of the title of “wife” and given up the idea of having more children. I’ve lost the dream of reaching a 50th wedding anniversary with someone and traveling to all the destinations we said we’d go to for each decade we made it through. I’ve had to let go of the life we worked hard to establish, the friends we had as a couple, the dreams we had together. I’ve had to rebuild a new circle of friends, a new way of life as a single parent, and I’ve had to create my own dreams about how my future will look without him in it. And every step of it has been painful and heartbreaking.

But the house is the one last thing we had together that I just can’t let go of. I want to build the house to fulfill something we had. I want to build it as a way to honor him, to acknowledge that while my life has to go on without him, there are still parts of him and what we had that I don’t have to give up. Moving on doesn’t have to mean letting go of everything. And it doesn’t mean forgetting him. I think that’s what I’ve been afraid of. That if I move on, his memory and his legacy will be forgotten over time. I don’t want him to just fade away.

I’ve struggled with how to keep him as a part of my daily life while building a new normal for me and the girls. I still think of him throughout the day, and most nights I talk to him before I say my prayers and fall asleep. And what I’m realizing is that I can mesh the life I had with the one I want to create. I don’t have to give up one to have the other. And more importantly, I can do all this at whatever pace I want to set. If I wait until I’m “done” grieving I’ll never move forward. Cause the truth is, I’ll never be done and it’s not fair to me or the girls for me to stay stuck in this place of pain just because I’m scared.

So I’m going to move forward in the direction of building our house.
Only, I’m going to have to do it by myself.
I just have to take the first step...


  1. I just want you to know you're not sending this into the void. I don't always know how to respond or comment, but I read it (and my heart ached, and I cried because loss hurts and healing is hard).

    When struggling to get my girls out the door one day to do something OUT of the house, I looked at my mom as I was on the brink of tears, who was with us and said, "getting there is SO HARD!" In her mom wisdom she replied, "It's always the transitions that are the hardest."

    I guess I did have something to share. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Thanks Kay, I know you know the struggles of twin parenting! You are absolutely right, transitions are the hardest and I seem to hit a very big transitional stage...thanks for your support!

  2. sounds like a great your descriptions of all the things we've let go of...inspiring to me that you say your prayers at night...

  3. Another beautiful post....thanks for sharing