He’s gone -It’s OK to say their name

After spending the past thirty 4th of July’s together, which was also my husband’s birthday, grief comes back full swing and is one of the more difficult holidays to get through for me.

Year one I made a nice Facebook post with photos. Then I made sure to be away from home. My brother and sister and mom and our kids joined us in Cape Cod for a family reunion. This ensured a good distraction and no one really mentioned Mike. Avoiding pain and sadness was my immediate goal. My family was hopeful that I’d be OK, so I was.

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Time doesn’t heal – it conceals

I read that this morning and thought to myself – Truth!

This week marked the 3rd year anniversary that my husband died unexpectedly the Friday night of Labor Day weekend.

I have been doing well overall; I work full time, I still live in my house, I travel and I even have a boyfriend.

But this week it all came back to me again.

A lot of the discomfort comes from anticipating that date.  I have been proactive in the past with planning trips for a purposeful diversion.  My close friends and family reach out with virtual hugs and comforting words which help me feel not so alone.  That was so appreciated.

So, even though life is good, I was surprised to find myself sobbing in the car last week and using the bottom of my skirt to wipe my face.  Maybe time doesn’t heal all wounds.

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Same face, different life – The passport photo

Well, the face is almost the same on the updated CVS photo that is going to be on my U.S. passport for the next 10 years.  My hair is lighter and the wrinkles are more obvious but there is some resemblance.  You are not allowed to smile and your hair must be pulled behind your ears.  I guess you’re supposed to look like you just survived a 14 hour international flight and you sat next to a crying baby the whole way- that’s what I look like in this photo.

I am planning to visit Japan this summer to see my son in Tokyo where he is studying abroad this semester.  My passport expires in August so it needs to be renewed thus the trip to CVS to get the photos.

I do not like the picture.  I look better when I am smiling. I don’t know why smiling is against the rules.

The whole photo shoot reminded me of when I went with my family to get passport photos 10 years ago.

We all drove to the local post office.  I removed all jewelry and was told not to smile. I was wearing a black turtle neck in the photo and I realized that I haven’t worn turtle neck sweaters in years.  I guess it has something to do with hot flashes.

Mike and the boys each had their photos taken that day too.  We had planned a family vacation to Jamaica and it was the first time the boys were going to be out of the country.  Mike and I needed to renew our passports so we all went together.

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