Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Gone is the Routine

in the Rockies around 1987
One Wednesday's I used to have a routine. It was the same thing everyday. Many of you caregivers know how important this is. Richard and I got up at the same time each morning. And then we followed the same routine. I got him up and to the table where I helped him to brush his teeth, wash his face, and prepared his breakfast. While he read the paper (for the first time of the day) I drank my coffee and read blogs or checked up on emails. Then he went to the bathroom and we changed his clothes for the day. Then into his chair and he watched The Chew, NCIS re-runs, Katie Couric, and Dr. Oz. By then it was nearing time for the kids to come home from school and I cooked a meal for us. Back to the table for Papa and then clean up after. Back to his chair for what shows he wanted in the evenings (Usually everything on CBS). As soon as the news was over I gave him his pills and got him comfortable in bed for the night and I fell exhausted (and lonely) onto the couch where I slept fitfully until it was time to repeat the routine again the next day.

But then came Monday, July 21, 2014. The day my routine changed forever. The day that the love of my life left this earth. And left me behind. Now that I can do what I want to do, as I often longed for, while he was alive....I don't want to do anything. I go through the motions. I get up and go through the day doing the things that need done...like laundry, cleaning house, cooking, mowing the grass, running the kids here and there. And missing my husband. I cry. I sob. Sometimes I moan. But there is no more routine. 

I know that I will find my groove again someday. But right now, it's gone. And the days are long. And they seem empty. I seem adrift. I feel alone. Even when others are around, I feel alone. I feel that I am the only one that is missing him. The only one with the big hole in my heart. I know that is not true. He left a big void in this house. In our hearts. In our lives. I just feel alone.

Today I am joining my friend Lisa at My Sweet Peanut where she hosts One Word Wednesday. I am no longer a true caregiver. Now I am a caretaker of the grandkids (or are they taking care of me) and I am the caretaker of our memories. Please come and join us. 


14 comments:

  1. That is a nice picture of you and Richard, Paula. Seems like you guys did some traveling :)

    You are right, you will get your groove back and establish a new routine. It won't be the same and you will always miss Richard, but it will be a routine that hopefully will not make the days seem so long and you feeling so alone.

    betty

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    1. Yes, Betty we did quite a bit of traveling. My family always thought we should be saving for the future. But I wouldn't trade it for all the good memories I have now that I shared with my love!

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  2. This new routine will always start with reminders of the old ones, but they will not be so sharp like a knife cutting through your flesh and that ache you carry in your chest. That lessens and at some point you will be able to enjoy your sweet memories with out so much sadness. You are doing everything right to inch toward that time, Paula. The hole heals and becomes almost a prism with which you can life a little in the moment and a little surrounded by memories, sweet sweet memories. It will happen. Keep writing... keep moving forward. That loneliness is not forever, neither will you have to forget or set aside your tremendous love you had for each other.

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    1. I feel like I am inching slowly ahead. Zippi you always make me feel better

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  3. I cannot possibly begin to understand the loss you are feeling...I dread the day that I do understand it. I do understand your sense of drifting around aimlessly though because that is how I am feeling without Mom here every moment of every day. I wrote about that loss of routine today also. Hang in there Paula, one day at a time.

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    1. I hope you never have to feel this Wendy. You try your best to go before Frank does. However, I think Richard would have suffered so much if I had died first that I am glad it is me and not him

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  4. Paula, I am so sad for you. I cannot imagine you pain. I hope today will be a good day for you. I'm thinking about you and saying a prayer for you.

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  5. Your new life was the first thing that popped into my head when the kids pulled out the word 'routine'. I wonder how different it must be. How unreal it must feel. And just how hard...I think of you all the time and am so pleased to see you back out here. I love reading your thoughts - I think you are so brave to be so honest with us. Glad you have those grands to take care of and who take care of you!

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    1. Lisa I am always better after your visit. Thanks for staying here with me through this!

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  6. "the caretaker of our memories".....that is SO powerful.

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    1. That is what I am now Lisa! I am so happy to have you back in my life.

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  7. Of course you are adrift, and probably will feel that way for quite some time. Your loss is magnified by losing not only Richard, but almost every activity that filled your days. Now your days are freed up, but the person you want to spend them with is gone. I'm so sorry, Paula. I wish there was a way to hurry you through this, but there isn't.

    I know you know the only way to move ahead is to move ahead. But it will feel untethered, and meaningless -and even surreal - until it no longer does. This part of the journey is likely no easier than the parts that just ended.

    But someday, this too will end. And your life will start to look brighter and more solid. And until that happens you keep writing about the pain, and loneliness, and grief because we will help you carry it.

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    1. Thank you so much Sammy....you said it so well. I want to feel every bit of what I am going through and I don't want to hurry through it. Richard deserved at least this much. And yes, sometime I will write a post about the kids' debates. They are both doing it this year.

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