Flashbacks

October 21, 2005

I keep having flashbacks to the day Michele killed herself. Discovering her is indelibly imprinted on my mind. Like a sore in your mouth that you can't stop touching with your tongue, I can't stop replaying some parts of that Monday over and over in my mind. I realize that the movies I've been watching, the phone calls to and from friends, and staying up until I am utterly exhausted, have all been efforts to keep myself from playing the images from her death over and over in my mind.

For the most part I feel like I am doing okay, but then the tidal wave of despair and loneliness washes over me and I am lost for a time. The worst moments of any day are those when I would normal have contact with Michele or see her again after being apart. Leaving work to go home is no longer a joyous thing, instead it has become something I dread. Last evening I was tired, and worn out from a long week at work, I really wanted to connect to Michele. Instead I was miserably alone.

I cried and cried for about an hour, alternating body-racking sobs with fits of anger and rage. The littlest things are upsetting to me now. And big things are so far beyond my ability to grasp as to be alien to my world. So I make lists in my more lucid moments, and when all I know is washed away for a time by flooding grief, I cling to the bits of sanity contained on those pieces of paper.

Caring for Nekko and Taz is helping too. Their unconditional (well for cats, unconditional) love of me is the only solace I find when I am by myself in what used to be our home. Both seek me out in their own way for attention and responding to them gives me a tenuous grounding for a moment or two. I shudder to think what my mood would be without these two wonderful companions.

In the cold light of a new day I am still numb, still in shock, still reeling from this new reality. I realize that I am still circling around the truth of this, refusing to look at it head on until I am stronger in this new empty life I've been handed. Facing the truth about Michele's death will take all the strength I've got, and all the resolve I can muster. Attempting that when I am not ready will only result in disaster, and so I'll wait until my core tells me it is time.

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.