As I write this it has been 34 days, two hours and roughly 16 minutes since the worst moment of my life. I wanted to write this on August 5th, the one month date, but it was too soon. In a lot of ways it's still too soon. I still do not understand it. I still do not believe it. I have to start to accept it, but it still feels unreal. I am still looking for a way around it, to hit "ctrl+z", to somehow go back in time. For us, time is linear. For us, this is reality.
There has not been a day that I have not cried. There have been days that I have laughed. In the past 34 days I've lost 27 pounds. I don't know if that's because I let the dogs drag me down the street every night or because there are times when I forget to eat. Either way, I'm thinner than I've been since college. Hell of a way to diet.
I've noticed that there are days where my short term memory is absolute garbage. Just too many background thoughts to get anything done. Then there are days where I feel like Rain Man counting toothpicks. I never used to have to write things down. I could keep them in my head and keep them straight. Now I'm walking around with a detective's notepad to keep track. Just the facts ma'am. Of all the things to complain about, this one seems to the most petty but is one of the most annoying.
I've tried to explain to a few people how multi-dimensional this all feels. There are are sensory perceptions no one ever tells you about. I catch certain scents that take me back to a time and place. I wish I could hear her opening and closing her dresser drawers. She never wrote down her recipes. I'm worried I will never taste her grilled chicken again. I had a friend describe this like someone telling you that you could never see the color red again. The rest of the spectrum is there, but you can forget about red. It's about as close as I've heard to how this feels.
The absolute hardest part is that I feel like I've lost the ability to communicate. I feel like half of my reference points are gone. I'm speaking a dead language. I need to find someway to revive it. It's hard when you have to stop every five minutes and ask "have/read/heard/seen such and such". I am enjoying this forum because if I want to reference something all I have to do is link to it. I saved Latin, what'd you ever do?
I know that the title of this post is provocative. I'll clear it up. I'm not planning on going anywhere. Rather, it is a mantra that I have been telling myself for the past few weeks. It's chorus of the Mountain Goats song "This Year". I am a big Mountain Goats fan. I know they were one her adopted favorites. At the right volume it's as strong a motivator as I've found.
I will be honest, there have been days where I don't want to get out of bed. There are days where all I want to do is go back to bed. Inevitably a dog or cat will jump on me and ask to be fed or let out. Those are moments when you have to remind yourself that it's not just about you. You get up. You are still breathing. You are still fighting. I am going to make it.
This is my first close experience with loss. We've lost cats and dogs over the years. I lost the uncle I was named after when I was 14. My grandparents passed away a few years back. Every one of those was crushing in it's own way. This is Hiroshima. I honestly don't know how I'm still here. Every one of those 34 days was a struggle. Every one its own story. Some sad, some not.
The constant theme has been that I have to keep getting up. I have to keep moving. I have to find new reference points. I have to enlist all of you in my cause, because none of us are alone. I am reliant on each and every one of you know that I am talking about an egg salad panini when I say that something looks like "barf in a wallet".
So we've made it this far together. We can keep it going. We keep breathing. We are going to make it if it kills us.