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Father's Day and Reminders

Monday, June 20, 2016
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Father's Day and Reminders


The other evening, I had a reminder ding on my phone.  All it said was 3000 days.  I was set for 9pm.   For a minute, I was puzzled.  I didn't remember setting the reminder, and it didn't automatically remind me what it was for.   I temporarily chalked it up to something my nine year old programmed (I have his ipod mirrored to my phone so I see every message, appointment, note and reminder-and he knows it. Alas--that is a completely different topic). 


When I went to bed that night it hit me.  It has been 3000 nights since I lay in bed with Robert.   3000 nights since we said good night, since we read munchkin a story, sang to our child, discussed our future, snuggled and watched bad TV before falling asleep.  3000 nights since we "enjoyed" each other. 


I don't remember when I set that alarm.   I suspect it was several years ago.  I suspect that I thought that maybe I should pause and purposefully remember him.   I don't know what I thought.   The odd thing was, several years ago, not remembering immediately would have broken me.  Today, it honestly barely phases me.  I have rebuilt my life.  Robert is a memory.  We talk about him on occasion.  His picture is on my fridge, on our wall and there is a picture of the three of us in my office.  He isn't absent or ignored by any means but I am at a point where my grief doesn't consume our waking hours. 


This weekend is also Father's Day.  I spoke to Munchkin about what he would like to do for his uncles and Papa.  I am blessed to have five men in our immediate family that do a fabulous job of demonstrating what it is to be a man.  They answer his questions without hesitation.  The help me show him what we expect of him.  They answer his questions about Robert even though they come few and far between now. 


Several years ago, Father's Day broke me.  I was so saddened by Robert's loss, that I could barely see the blessings that I have in our lives.   I was consumed with the unjust fact that Robert had but ONE Father's Day when Munchkin was about 7 weeks old.  I was sad that he missed his growing.   Don't get me wrong, I still am sad that Robert was cheated out of parenting.  There are not words to express the loss that both of them experience in his untimely death. 


What I can tell you is that the same thing that people told me years ago is true.  It doesn't become OK that he died, that will never be OK-but the grief and the raw emotion change over time.  The scars heal and the pain became a part of me. I learned to rebuild my life, things changed and they seem better.  It does not erase the loss, the horror or the unfairness of what happened to us, but for me, it makes it far easier to see the blessings and profess my gratitude. 


The gratitude that I have, makes things like the reminder that I have not slept in the same bed as my husband for 3000 nights not sting nearly as badly as it must have the day I set that reminder.  It makes celebrating Father's Day a celebration of all of the men in our lives that love us enough to step up and step into his shoes.  For that, I am Grateful.  

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