I was originally planning to write another post about my slide back into depression, but then I watched last week’s Desperate Housewives episode. I find the show to be absurd yet entertaining most of the time, but occasionally there is an episode that touches you. This was one such episode.
In case you don’t watch the series, here is the basic idea: four housewives who are best friends and neighbors share every triviality and tribulation of their lives. The husbands are key secondary characters, and one of them is shot and killed in the previous episode. The episode I watched was the one that involves his funeral and how each housewife has dealt with the men in their life. But what struck me about it is the impact that death has on our life.
As you may know, I lost my fur-child Goldie a week ago. The pain of loss was refreshed today as I read the well-meaning condolence cards from our vet and the emergency animal clinic we took her to. I remember as she lay there on her side panting, all I wanted to do was pet her and tell her how much I loved her. I knew she wouldn’t make it to the vet in time but DH wanted to try. It made him feel better to try. I just wanted her to know how much I loved her because I wasn’t sure it was always clear. So many times she got pushed aside because she wasn’t as demanding as the other cats. She was quiet and kept to herself unless she wanted something. How many times did I kick her off the desk, the chair, or the bed because I was doing something else instead of taking five minutes to pet her?
I lost my mother two years ago. I didn’t say anything at the funeral. I didn’t have anything to say. I had been mourning her loss for years (she had Alzheimer’s) so I felt pretty numb about it by that time. My mother and I still have many unresolved issues, issues that can’t be fixed now, issues that couldn’t even have been fixed before she became ill. I did promise her at the funeral that I would forgive her someday. The only thing that I hope she knew before she forgot me altogether was that I loved her. Despite everything she put me through, she was still my mother, and I loved her.
My dad turns 83 this week. There is a difficult past between us, but most of it has been worked through during the years. I know now that he is proud of me, and he only pressured me to do well in school because he thought it was how he could make sure I succeeded. He couldn’t have known that it would backfire. That I would internalize every criticism and generate a sense of inadequacy. He doesn’t know that I’m bipolar or that those genes most likely come from his side of the family. They didn’t know those things back then. My dad was an accountant and a steel worker, not a scientist, and “the web” as we know it didn’t exist back then. He did what he thought was best.
Dad knows I love him. Sometimes we don’t talk for weeks, and then I start to worry about him, but he swore to me that if he were ever to be in trouble, he would call me. He sends me the most lovely cards, but gets upset if I do things for him. I know that someday I’ll have to go on without him too, although I hope that day is a long time away.
And I tell DH every day how much I love him. I can’t imagine my life without him. I don’t want to imagine my life without him. My husband is the kindest person you will ever meet. He takes care of me, even when I don’t or can’t reciprocate. He takes care of the animals even though most of them think they belong to me. I can’t think of enough wonderful things to say about him, even if he does irritate me sometimes – there’s still no one else I would rather be with. Without him, my life would be empty, lonely, and pointless. So I worry on nights like this when he has to work late then commute 50 miles home. I love him more than words can say. He is my soulmate.
I’m not really sure where this post was going other than a simple TV show prompted me to think about the loved ones in my life. The ones I love and the ones I have loved. Always make sure the ones you love know that they are loved, be they human or not. You never know what the future will bring and you’ll want them to know how much they are loved before you can’t tell them anymore.
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