Hiraeth

Day 324: 01/19/2014 Entry

I learned a new word today:

“Hiraeth – (n.) a homesickness for a home to which you cannot return, a home which maybe never was; the nostalgia, the yearning, the grief for the lost places of your past”

It was something I read while scrolling through Facebook. Will asked if I ever felt like that, and at the time my answer was “sometimes”. As I sit here and let the word and its definition coil around me, I realize that “sometimes” is actually “all the time”. I feel that way, all the time. Brandon and our life together is a home I can never return to; it’s gone, forever. It’s nothing but memories.

See, of the famous stages of grief, I feel like I have never hit denial or anger.

It has always been crystal clear to me that Brandon is dead; I never had any illusions about that, not from day one. Maybe it’s because I was there when he actually died…it’s nothing I’m sure of, just a general feeling, but I remember sometime that night, before or maybe as I was dialing 911, I heard this sound come from him. It was horrible, it was something between a sigh and a gargle…I lack the adequate words to actually describe it. But I hear it, still. To this day that sound haunts me. He made this sound, and then there was nothing. He was nothing. Whatever was “Brandon”, whether it was a soul, energy, a breath – whatever it is that makes up a person, was just…gone. Before that night, I have never seen a dead body before. The emergency operator kept asking me if Brandon was breathing, and I remember saying “I don’t know” over and over again. But I knew. I think deep down, I knew. I was just so scared, so very scared, to answer that question truthfully. I couldn’t say the words. His time of death is documented as March 1, 2013 at 21:45. I had already found him by 21:45, so I was actually with him when his heart stopped beating and he was really gone from this world. That’s fact. And I’m very sure that whatever that “sound” was, it was Brandon dying. So no, I never had any illusions about him being dead, because I heard and saw him die.

I never want to feel as powerless as I did that night again. It was a horrible, truly ugly feeling, to sit there and watch the person you love bleed and die and not be able to do anything, ANYTHING to help.

Mom said something the other day that never occurred to me, but I realize is very true. She said that the traumatic experience that all of this was, it was made even worse because there were two very opposite emotions involved. I was so happy to be married to Brandon, we literally just got married weeks before. It was such a high, high, happy emotion that surged through me and stayed with me, until that night. That night, that very strong, happy emotion was abruptly replaced by this low, strong, painful, ugly emotion. So, in the span of 5 weeks, I had experienced two very different, very opposite emotions. Mom is right, those high and lows didn’t do anything to help the already shitty thing that happened.

It is 3 days before January 22, which is a day Brandon and I should be going to the Melting Pot to celebrate being married for a year, and also the fact that it would have been our 6 year anniversary. Instead, I get to sit with the realization that it is almost a year, a whole damn year, since he died. In about six weeks, it will be a year since I came home and watched as my world took its last breath and died; pushing me into a new life I never asked for or wanted. Last week I got an email from the Melting Pot, reminding me that it was almost our anniversary, and that we should make reservations. There’s a slap in the face if I ever did see one.

All of this rambling brings me to Will. I know he is willing to be the person I talk to about these things, and maybe he even wants me to lean on him in that way. So far, I really haven’t. I just don’t want to put this weight on him…I’m not sure that if he really knows how messed up I can be about this, that he’ll want to put up with it. I don’t know if I would, if I could, if the roles were reversed. The emotional minefield that I walk is a doozy. I just don’t want to burden him with all of this mess. Really, I’m scared to burden him with all of this mess.

And that brings me to the real issue at hand: fear. I’m scared of damn near everything these days, which is so unlike me. My first therapist told me that I would have “abandonment” issues, and I remember I shrugged her off, because certainly I was stronger and better than that. Certainly, I was more logical and could make myself be normal, whatever that is. I’m finding she may have known what she was talking about, all these months later.

I’m scared of EVERYTHING, and it makes me feel so weak, so damn weak. I hate it, I want to change it. The realization that there’s nothing I can do about it just makes me want to curl into a corner and cry. I feel so damn fragile…I despise it. I was always someone who was a strong, independent, fearless woman. I don’t recognize the pathetic, weak, scaredy-cat I have become over the past year. I hate her. She worries about not being good enough, pretty enough, smart enough. She worries about death sneaking around every corner, every day. And as my therapist put it, she worries about being abandoned again. Actually, to be clearer, she’s absolutely terrified of being abandoned again. Sure, I put on a good show…looking at me, you wouldn’t be able to tell that I have never been more insecure about everything in my entire life than right now. This fear, this new companion, is paralyzing.

Some of my insecurity stems from not knowing where Will and I are heading. This thing we have is so new. With Brandon, I always knew he loved me, deeply loved me, and that I was “it” for him. There was never a doubt in my mind. I never worried about him cheating, meeting someone else, or leaving, because I knew, I KNEW he loved me with all of his heart. I knew, as cheesy as it sounds, that I was “the one” for him, that he didn’t want anyone else. And I can’t begin to explain how beautiful that knowledge, that certainty, feels. I remember one morning last year, we were making breakfast in the kitchen, and he said something along the lines of, “You’re stuck with me, forever and ever” and smiled in that big, happy way of his. I always shied away from words like “always” and “forever”, but I remember I actually told him, that the only reason I saw us ever not being together was one of us dying. Little did I know, huh? I miss that certainty…the warm comfort of it. I don’t have that now, and it makes me feel naked and vulnerable.

I hate feeling weak. Yet that is all I feel these days. I don’t show it, but if you dig deep enough, I’m drowning in insecurity and weakness.

I hate it.

I despise it.

It disgusts me.

I always feel so fragile, like the smallest chip in the glass will shatter me. I make myself pull it together, be normal, live life, find reasons to smile and laugh, but inside, at night when the world is silent and asleep, I’m nothing but a terrified little girl, scared of her own shadow.

 

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