Life after loss


I am positive I am behind the times on this one – and for that I apologize but I just finished the movie “The Fault in Our Stars’ and I have to say it is about the worst movie ever.  And you should take the 2 hours to watch it.

It starts off tear-jerkingly enough with a teenage girl battling cancer.

I can only imagine that sucks.  I am young enough that I remember what life is when you are 16/17 years old but I am also far enough into my adulthood to know what it is like to see your child in pain.  My biggest fear in life used to be that I would be murdered – now it is that I won’t be able to protect my daughter.  You can imagine a movie all about something you can’t control in your child’s life would probably be a sensitive subject matter.

As the movie progresses it becomes more about her love story with a young, apparently carefree cancer survivor who has a terrible relapse.  SPOILER ALERT: he dies and she is left behind.

Here is where the movie becomes extremely hard at least for me.  There are some losses you anticipate in life – like grandparents, aunts, uncles, parents.  You know they will suck but in the natural order of things good-byes will be said.  As a parent (I imagine especially a mother) from the moment you find out you are pregnant you are worried about miscarriage, accidents, SIDS – I remember I used to think ‘if I can just get to her 1 year birthday I can relax a little’.  News flash, 1 is not the magic let your defenses down age.  But you are worried about the possibility of having to burry your own child.

The real trouble comes in not in the parent’s loss of their child or the impending loss of the other families terminally ill daughter but in the girls loss of her love.

I know that chances are I will out live my husband.

I always have.  I am younger, women have a longer life expectancy, and I am just a bit more stubborn than him.  As much as it is within my power I don’t intend to leave this world until I am damn good and ready.  But until tonight, sitting on the love seat with him dosing while I cried my eyes out – it hit me.

If I do in fact out live my husband there will come a point in time where I have to pick myself up and move away.  I don’t mean that metaphorically – I mean there will be a moment that I have to leave him.  If that means his grave site at the end of a funeral or his body after he has gone, I don’t know – but even thinking that thought seems unbearable.  This February will be 10 years since our first date and we likely have at least another 50 – 60 years to go barring any sort of unfair and unexpected turn of events.

After 60 – 70 years together how do you function without that person?

At 2 am it’s hitting me that chances are I will be left to figure that out for myself one day, and I don’t have a ‘plan’.

I realize a plan sounds silly but I have one for the day I realize I have to say good-bye to my little girl.  I actually even have one in the event that my husband out lives me.

Death is such a common fear – and I’ll admit I am afraid of the process.  But there is something so much worse and that is being the person left behind after so much of your world goes missing.

Seriously, watch the movie.  Bring Kleenex and a bottle of wine (if you are of age), you’ll cry but it will be worth it.


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