Losing Kath

Love lost, read and found

Only time separates the dead from the living.

You can’t possibly know in life, when you are ready to move on or what if the time comes, that even means.When you are happy and in love having built your life around such happiness, looking to move on from someone dying is the last thing that ever comes to your mind! All you know is that what you had, is the only thing you want back, but as you can’t have it, the process of grief sees us in a state of perpetual mourning.

In being sadly bereaved from your whole life’s partner, moving on is not something you really care about, let alone seek, but the horrible thing is that time keeps passing away and the distance it puts between you and your once living partner keeps growing and refuses to go away. You can feel like you are in touching distance from where he or she left you, like it was just yesterday you saw them slip away and go quiet, but yet as you find yourself waiting, even living in what you thought was the moment of what you both were doing, the deafening echo of the conversation you were constantly having and clinging on to, slowly prises itself free and escapes. When that happens is when you know you are really grieving and you are no longer just missing the person you love, but the sound of their voice in your life.

This is another kind of ache you have to go through and time does it in its own way, and in all of this time from the moment they tragically left you, you have this gnawing emptiness eating away at your stomach, an almost ever present knot. Only time and the individual can know what they feel, but you never really get over losing what you would call the love in your life, nor are you looking to ever put it behind you. Time moves you on whether you are looking to move on or not. It brings you to the eventual conclusion that you just want to survive and the strangest thing about that is it kind of throws you back into another mourning phase. Deciding you want to survive without your partner, is almost as sad as having watched your loved one die!

As a husband and father I have thought endlessly about what my wife might have wanted for me and for our daughters and that in that I had to find the will to go on and survive, though in the first few months I almost longed just to lay in the grave beside her. It was not a phase I could see myself getting over, but of course no one counts what healing time will bring when you are in your darkest hour. My grieving has been anything but straight forward and at times it was even hard to recognise it for what it was, feeling at times like it just felt like running away all the time, but as far as I ran, it was never me moving on. It was me running away from the absence of her voice at the end of any conversation.

I don’t think you ever get over the loss of a partner if it was only their death that separated you. Mourning such a loss doesn’t mean you will eventually get over them and look to move on, it means you are healing in grief to the wounds caused by severance and this is what time alone allows to heal. Time does heal such wounds and eventually the fear of bleeding out internally starts to numb and the drain on the zest to living stops seeping away and then unexpectedly you start to look up. 

It is well documented for anyone who cares to believe that there are seven stages of grief and that they don’t always come in one order or sometimes you don’t even feel that you have felt them, but sooner or later the absence of your loved one’s conversation is replaced by the inner voice that once only you knew. How long you were in a relationship with your partner might determine how soon it will take to reunite you with your inner you and in my case it had been more than 26 years since I relied only on my driving voice or knew that I was still hearing it. When my wife’s voice grew quiet and as I eventually grieved its loss in my life, I started to hear my own inner voice in more clarity and it was lifting and driving me on.

I think only your inner voice knows when you feel healed over inside and that is when I knew I was ready to really live on, and not just as a ghost on auto pilot. 

Listening to my inner voice still proved conflicting as although I was ready to admit I still wanted very much to live on, I did not really want to fully move on and leave my dead wife behind me, but I gave this a lot of thought and then realised I did not really need to. You see when we meet people in our lives, they have all been on a journey and their journey has known lots of love. We don’t expect people to pretend that their lives up until the moment we met them did not matter neither do we ask them to leave anything behind, we just silently ask them to love us fully.

A heart is capable of knowing love and of loving and it doesn’t stop working just because it has known love before. You can still look forward to loving and being loved without the need to get over the love you have felt in the before, and having felt and known anything you feel you can call love, you would be mad not to always cherish it. 

Only death separated me from my love and nothing like time or even death will make me declare the need to say I am over it. Many family members in my life have come and gone and no one has ever asked me to declare if I am over their loss and yet my life still has gone on in their absence without the need to measure. In life you don’t have to get over someone to be seen as still complete, time puts things behind you but it is the things behind you that help prop you up and propel you forward. 

I guess I realised I was ready to move forward in life, when I realised I didn’t have to leave anything behind to convince any others that I or my heart were still functioning and despite the fact that they have known hurt, it is only in leaving things behind you that anyone could call you incomplete.


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