John died four years ago today.
This is the first year that his deathiversary snuck up on me. I have been preoccupied with other things (buying a house! work! general life!), and it was not until yesterday at church that I remembered. Last year, I shared the three year anniversary during joys and sorrows at our church service; I was a weepy, emotional mess, but there was no better place to be in such a state. As I sat in church yesterday, it came back to me, and I realized that today was The Day.
By this morning, I'd forgotten again, and it was not until I had to write the date on a paper at work that it came back to me. It felt good, in a way, to be caught unawares, like some sign of "progress," whatever that's supposed to mean. I wrote about it on Facebook, asking for people to share memories of John. And as the memories rolled in, so did my emotions. People had the sweetest, funniest things to share. It's not just 20/20 hindsight that casts John in such a flattering light; he was a truly great guy who was loved by many.
I was pretty useless at work today, weepy a few times and forgetful and unfocused otherwise. Frankly, for the past few weeks, I've been in a similar state. Not so much the weepy, but the forgetful. I have forgotten a bunch of things lately: birthday parties and gatherings with friends and bill payments and meetings at work. I'm generally a much more forgetful human as a parent and since John's death, but the past weeks have been particularly acute. Coincidence? Likely not.
Upon arriving home, I ended up yelling at Maddie and Riley, really yelling, about something mostly trivial. I hadn't yelled at them in a long time. It felt horrible, yet freeing. That rage still lives in me about John's death: rage that he's gone, rage about how he went, rage about the injustice of life, rage about not having something I want. It's totally inappropriate to take that out on Maddie and Riley; I know that, and I berate myself mightily for it. Afterwards, when the rage had died down, we talked about it, and we all cried a bit, me more than them.
I miss John when I don't expect to. In general, I miss him more now that our life is, relatively speaking, so steady and even keel. I'm content with my life. I'm sure things would not be perfect if John were here. But he'd be here, and I miss him, and when I imagine what it would be like, it's happy.