Last week was another of those milestones. Wedding Anniversary. Can't figure out how to look at it. Do I still count how many years it would have been? Or do I just look at the date and say we had 42 years and the counting ends. Of course that approach reinforces the finality of death.
Why am I babbling about this? Comes back to what I have written before. Why are there these Anniversaries and what do I do with them? Are they emotional mind-fields? Or with the passage of time have they become non-events?
I watched the marked date loom on my calendar. Saw it get closer. Wondered if I needed to plan something to distract myself as I had done in the earlier years. This is the 4th Wedding Anniversary without Rob. No wait, I think my counting is off. Is it the 5th?!?! Is this a good thing that I can't remember or figure it out? Do I want/need to really definitely know?
I remember when numbers were all I had. And I held so tightly to them. They have floated away, something I did not think was possible. And here I find that I can't and don't want to nail down this number.
The Anniversary passed uneventfully. Not even a blimp...that day. The following weekend I went to an exhibit at a local art museum on the History of the Guitar—a fabulous exhibit of ancient and modern guitars. Acoustic and electric. They even showcased an "Air Guitar" (the curator has a sense of humor). I wandered thru the galleries thinking how much Robert would have enjoyed this exhibit.
Afterwards I attended a lecture and performance that complemented the exhibit. They were given by a professor who is also a classical guitarist. When he sat down and started to play his guitar tears flowed down my face. The music was indeed heavenly but it invoked my loss and yearning. I went to the lecture alone. I now do lots of things on my own. But I wanted to be sharing this moment with Robert. He played the guitar and I believe he would have loved hearing this music.
I realized as the tears were running down my face I could have stopped them. The emotions were not overpowering, they just were. I could have shifted my feelings and thoughts. But I remembered something I recently told a new widow—"Defend your grief. Embrace it." So I took my own advice to heart and let the tears flow.