I spent the weekend pretty much being sick. Nothing that seemed to take complete hold of me the way a definitive flu or stomach virus will do. More just head congestion that came and went, tummy troubles that came and went, low grade fevers that came and went...and a pervading fatigue that would not leave me be. My head was foggy with it. I am amazed I didn't have a car accident or some other minor home tragedy. I never really felt all the way "with it". Joe put me to bed at 8 PM on Saturday night and to my amazement I slept all the way through to 8 AM Sunday morning. I felt better on Sunday but am not feeling completely well again today. I have heard it can take a long time to shake things when you are grieving. I guess that must be true. I can't seem to get all the way sick nor all the way well. Sadly, I went to take my temperature one evening during this...we have a digital thermometer, the kind that keeps the last recorded temp in its memory bank and displays it when you turn the thermometer back on. My breath caught in my throat as 101.1 came into view..and I realized...nobody has been sick since Joseph went back to the hospital. The reading was the last temperature of his I ever took at home. It was the reading that prompted us to take him in last November...the entry that never had an exit. It is just phenomenally amazing what little things can sneak up on you and get you like that. He's been gone eight months today. I ache inside. The weather is changing. Fall is arriving. Granted, its a Texas Fall...highs in the 80s instead of the upper 90s and 100s...more rain, a little less sun. but the cold weather is coming. And like most things that take me back to that awful time, I am dreading it. Will I find peace in the familiarity, the reminders? I was at Garden Ridge this weekend and disgustingly they have all the Christmas stuff up, including Christmas music playing to show off the dancing lights that keep time with the music now. I thought when I saw that again it would devastate me. Instead I just felt the familiar "you have GOT to be kidding me" and a little bit of anticipation for the coming holiday season..which surprised me and then saddened me. I feel wrong to feel happy still. Yet there has been in the past week more of a peacefulness inside me. I do not trust it. I know too well now the ebb and flow of this loss...that as soon as I think I have found my footing, the riptide of grief will seize me and carry me elsewhere, leaving me breathless, disoriented and insecure. I am glad for the warmer thoughts, the increased dreams of my Joe-Gi, the times I can think about him and not feel like I want to lay on the ground and let it swallow me whole. But I don't trust it.
I met little Zachary Joseph last night for the first time. He is four months old now and so dang cute. Its hard to be sad around a baby. Jacob and Matthew are getting so big. (These are my nephews, my brother Jeff's children) Matthew is two and says all his words without the first consonant, so trying to make out what he says is difficult..but he is so intent on pleasing and so cuddly and solemn. My heart is particularly fond of him. Jacob is four and just full of beans and vigor,loving to hit, wrestle, roughhouse and laugh. They fight like puppies and play like them too. I should spend more time with kids. Its hard to see life in negative terms when you spend time inside a child's world.