26 April 2007

Lonely Night

Last night was the first night since John died that the twins and I were alone in the house. My dad is here, but he's staying at a B&B up the road, so once he left around 9:00 p.m., the twins and I were on our own for the night.

Part of me was relieved to get some time to myself. It's been in short supply lately. I've found it hard to balance my desire to get some alone with a craving for the comfort of friends and family.

Being alone in the house really made me feel John's absence, though. I was lounging around on the couch, watching American Idol, wishing I could cozy up to John while I watched. Of course, it didn't help that it was the special Idol Gives Back with lots of sad footage about starving kids in Africa and poor kids in the U.S. Since becoming a mother, I am especially sensitive to the suffering of children, and since John's death, I'm just especially sensitive. There were some tears shed, which is not a bad thing, but not enjoyable, either.

I was very tired from having taken my mom to the airport so early, but I didn't sleep all that well. I fell asleep easily and hard, before I could even finish a conversation I started with John. But then I woke up at 1:00 a.m. for no real reason, and after that I felt like I only slept lightly, a sleep filled with dreams that I no longer remember. I looked for John when I woke up at 1:00, and while I wasn't exactly surprised not to see him in bed next to me, I was harshly lonely for his presence.

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The bureaucracy of death continues. I've contacted all of John's various retirement accounts now, although for one of them I've hit a wall. The rep I talked to said that I needed to contact John's employer re: what to do as the employer maintained the beneficiary information. I'm not even sure who John worked for at the time that he set up this account; the account is an old 403(b) from some job John had right out of grad school, before I even knew him. I might call the fundholder back and talk to someone else to see if I can get a different answer. Not today, though. I'm done with the death calls today.

I had planned to call a charity about donating John's car today. We both hated his car. It had endless mechanical problems and was a gas hog. When I looked up the number to call the charity, though, I got a sudden pang. Dealing with the retirement accounts is largely intangible. Getting rid of John's car, despised as it was, is such an obvious symbol that he is gone, never to return. I hate that damn car and yet suddenly it seems hard to let go. I'll give myself some time on that one.

14 comments:

bg's Little Sis said...

Dear Snick,
I'm thinking of you...like you I have a very difficult time since I've become a mother watching things about children suffering, yesterday on the way into work I had NPR on and it was a story about orphanages in Russia, how the gov't has halted all foreign adoptions, and the conditions that these kids, especially the babies are living in, with no contact with a person for hours on end and then it's limited.

I hate that feeling of hopelessness, you want to do something but there's nothing you can do really for that singular situation.

When that feeling of hope is taken away in any circumstance it's just terrribly tough to take I think..when choice is gone as well it's unbearable. I have faith that you have hope amidst what I can only imagine is the toughest thing you've ever had to deal with...like you say one foot in front of the other...

I watched some of Idol too, I will do my little part, I'll pitch in, and I'll hope that it makes a difference I guess.

Who do you want to win?

Lots of love to you and the babies,
lil'sis

Tigger said...

It can be very hard getting rid of things that belonged to John. Definitely give yourself time. Grief and dealing with loss are not something you want to rush, even if it seems like it might be easier to get it over and done with. Does it really matter that much if you donate the car today or in two months? :) It might take you a year to clean the closet and get rid of the clothes!! And there is no saying that you even have to - you can keep his things around forever if you really want. This has to be taken at your pace.

I'm sorry some companies are being difficult. I remember my mom having to do similar things for her brother and it took her a long time to get it all sorted out. Of course, she didn't have intimate knowledge of his life either, so that made a difference. I hope it gets easier for you soon.

OTRgirl said...

As much as I crave alone time and often resent having to do dinner and talk with my husband, when he was gone for a week, the silence stretched into infinity. And I could call him. I project that feeling into what it must be like for you and get sad and teary on your behalf. Sigh.

And the details of death. No fun.

Snickollet said...

Li'l Sis--

Thanks for your comment, as always.

Re: Idol, I just love that Melinda Doolittle, although Jordin is amazing and I have a soft spot for Blake. If it's one of those three, I'll be happy. And you?

Melany aka Supermom said...

I don't understand why they make it so difficult to handle death claims. I help my clients with it every now and again and I personally think they are abusing people who are already vulnerable. HUGS to you.

Klynn said...

It's very hard to make all those calls, and get through the bureaucratic red tape. It would be annoying and frustrating if you hadn't just lost a loved one, but considering that you did just lose someone, it's just plain horrible. You are so strong. We all do what we have to do during times like this. You'll likely look back and wonder how you managed. Take as much time as you need, and don't forget that he IS still there with you, in your heart, and living and breathing in those two precious babies. Love and Hugs...

Leggy said...

((Sigh)). The middle of the night really is the loniest time when you are in grief. I remember hearing the expression "The Darkest Hour is Just Before Dawn" and I didn't really get what it meant (literally or figuratively) until I was in the throws grief after my brother died. 1 am can be such a lonely time. And if even if there are others around that sympathize, no one quite exactly understands what its like because their relationship to John was fundamentally different than yours(not always 'less', eg, for his parents, just different.)
Thinking of you...

bg's Little Sis said...

Snick-

I'm with you, I think I'd love to see Jordin win, but the 3 you mentioned are my top 3 too, so either we both have very good ears and a wonderful appreciation for music, or....no let's not go there, you and I are WONDERFUL!

Lots of love,
lil'sis

Cibele said...

Dear Snick,

Just want to sent lots of love for you and the twins! Reading your posts makes me understand a little more what goes in my sister's head. She lost her husband 2 years ago in a tragic accident. The difference is that they had been married for only 10 months and had no children. I often feel hopeless and don't know how to comfort her. I remember it was very hard at the beginning letting it go of his things, little by little she felt strong enough to do it so. Take your time!. She is much better now; getting back to her normal happy self and I hope you get there soon also.
All the best

Jason said...

We used to watch American Idol. I'd be driving down the street and hear Daniel Powter's "Bad Day" and just lose it. I watch much less TV now. It's not so fun when you can't root for or bitch about one of the singers.

I hope your sleep improves. Mine's been very intermittent. Days of good sleep and then days of up in the middle of the night - not necessarily anxious, just unable to sleep. It's 9 months Sunday.

Yankee T said...

Snick,
I know so well what you mean about becoming a mother and how it makes you more and more sensitive to the plight of children. I can only imagine how you are a raw nerve now.
Sending love to you and the kids. So sorry about the 1 a.m. waking-thinking of you all the time.
XOXO
YT

lct said...

Just want you to know I'm reading, even if I don't always comment.

I'm looking forward to seeing you and the babies next week. Although, of course, I wish the circumstances were different.

I don't watch Idol, but maybe you can introduce me to the phenomenon.

Christine said...

Hi Snick -- Sounds like you are managing, feeling it all as you go along. Idol was a heartbreaker last night, so I think everyone joined you in your tears. We do need to have that coffee sometime -- feel free to bring the munchkins.

Anyway, know I am still thinking of you and praying for you and the twins. And of course, John.

liz said...

What everybody else said, and more hugs.