Well Of Despair

January 25, 2006

My demons are getting the better of me this evening. I feel jittery and sluggish at the same time. My neck is a rigid bar of pain while my head feels as if it is stuffed with cotton. Emotionally I feel spent, however, there are spurts of white hot anger just to keep me (and anyone near me) on their toes.

I'm deep in the wilderness that is grief and, although I may have made some progress in the last 108 days the reality is I will be moving through the grief process everyday for the rest of my life. Maybe not as intensely as I am right now, but still dealing with it for ever. When I realize that my being here without Michele will not end until my life is over I feel utterly spent and devastated. This doesn't end - she is NEVER coming back. I will never again feel the touch of her hand in mind. I will never again be able to reach out in the night and touch her hair. I will never again be able to hear her laughter outside of my memory. I have lost her for this lifetime.

It hurts so very badly. I can hardly swallow and my eyes burn with tears that only provide momentary release. My anger unleashes the urge to smash and rend, to destroy, and I hit the desk over and over until my hands are red and my arms ache from the repeated impacts. I have this unending tired that never goes away and I wonder if I'll ever feel light again. Grief is a tremendous weight that pulls at you, drags you down with every step you take.

My recent spending spree has been fun, but ultimately spending can't buy me out of this hell. There is no way to run away from my self fast enough to leave behind the pain and sorrow. My understanding of people who lose themselves in alcohol or drugs has increased tremendously in the last three months. There are times when oblivion of any sort would be preferable to conscious awareness of my life. I fill my days with activities to distract myself from the gaping wound that is my heart. Little feints to ward off the unrelenting pressure of grief that never really goes away.

I've heard people say, people who've lost a loved one, that they would do anything for one more minute of time with their lost partner, child, parent, or lover. I've said it myself more than once in this ordeal. However I would now like to change that statement. If I can't be with her forever then I don't want that one more minute because after the high of seeing her again I would only crash to a new depth, one from which I might never recover. Salvation lies in movement; movement away from the pain, movement towards a new reality that is "Mark" and no longer "Michele and Mark". The pain comes from two places: realizing that in order to continue to live myself I must let go of her so I can move forward and realizing that I can't let go of her yet. Even though I understand I won't lose her memory by moving forward I can't bring my self to release the scalding hot rock of my grief.

The pain lets me know that I am still alive. The trick is to remember how it felt to be alive without pain, and to find a pathway to that place inside myself.

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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.