Gerard Theuns: January 15, 1948-November 19 2011
by Exiene Lofgren
(Brooklyn, NY. USA)
Gerard Theuns (on right)
No writer has ever fully explained love to those who has never experienced it to full capacity. Nor, have they ever wrote about grief and all of it's mess. Gerard and I were together for 6 years, he died of Bladder Cancer four days after our anniversary in our home.
I have good days and bad days, one great day but most days are just "eh'. But, even on good days, I have anxiety, lack of energy, my sleep and eating patterns are off and I get paranoid about my own health after 2 1/2 years of dealing with my husband's illness. And just when I think I'm going to die and/or go crazy, I cry...hard. Then, my body calms down and I am exhausted. I read as much as I can about grief to help me know this is common, I go to support meetings and talk to friends. But there are days when I wonder when the physical and emotional pain will end.
I'm not a patient person to begin with so being that it's been less than three months since his death, I know I'm just beginning to process , but, it still is aggravating at times as I can pay the bills and go to work, but I have no focus to expand myself with all the time I have to myself since he died.
He was the love of my life and now he is not here. I know I will be happy again, but the process is painful, surreal and inconvenient. I miss him, but know he had to leave. Our home feels bigger and emptier and not having the one person who made me feel safe above all else raises my anxiety as I figure out how to live in the now and future.
Today is a low day, but I know these days have been fewer and farther between as time goes on.
Even with the world by your side, grief is solitary. I know it's necessary and hope that I come out of the other side a better human being. Today however, feels like a step back, and that's OK because the fact I can write at all tells me that tomorrow will be different and reminds me that yesterday was not the same as today.
"You mourn as hard as you loved" is the best description I've heard about this process. It has no timeframe and keeps the process personal, allowing yourself to guide your spirit as others, out of love, give advice that contradicts how you feel. I loved my husband, but he is gone, I let him go willingly when the time came as it would have been selfish of me to do otherwise, I'm not clinically depressed, I am sad and at times, angry, But if someone tells me a joke I can laugh. It's the process. This horrible and needed process that reminds the living they are alive. And I want to live as it is the best tribute to the man who taught me about life and love more than any human on earth.