Still.

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It's amazing what an illusion time is. I read a scientific article once that said time seems to speed up as we get older because of experiences. When we are young, time seems to go slower, and as we get older, most of us realize time goes very quickly. The article said when we are young and constantly having "new" experiences, time seems to go slower, but as we get older and have less new things to experience, time speeds up. 

I don't think so. 

Time goes quicker when you are happy and content. That's a fact. Sure, when you are busy in life with work, relationships, etc, time does go fast and you never seem to have enough of it because you have so many things to fill your day... but nothing speeds up time like happiness. 

Even recovering from surgery after surgery, and being sick these past few years, time has went quickly, and it surprised me. 

Now time means nothing to me. It goes slowly even though my days are full. And it feels like a lifetime has passed in the past month, a whole lifetime. It seems like I have already lived an entire lifetime, and like I must be 80 years old. I look at my life and it feels like I have already lived so much, it's confusing to me. This being left alone, this "carrying on" that happens... It's a strange feeling I cannot put into words. 

You know it is what it is. And you accept it. But it's like you are watching yourself from a distance.

I have always, always, found much beauty in life, even through pain, be it emotional or physical. And in nature, you do not have to look very far. I've spoken much about the healing powers of nature, and it has never failed me, nor is it failing me now. We are having really amazing November weather, it's warm, almost every morning has been beautiful.,. and I've been awake everyday to see the sunrise. Sleep has not been my friend, although it's slowly coming back to me, I'm still awake at 5 AM every day. Kevin and I were not early birds, ever. But things have changed. I sleep earlier, I rise earlier. I drink my coffee in bed with the dogs, usually I try to walk in the mornings since I'm trying to build my physical strength back and morning is my favorite time of day to walk, it's so quiet. The day still holds so much potential. It's good to start any day with a little clarity, and therapy, offered by nature. 

Of course, my animals have not failed me either. I have a million reasons to be strong, and I will be, there is no question.

But that doesn't mean it's any easier. 

Thankfully our minds and bodies have coping mechanisms to help us deal with grief... at least when they are working. They help protect us from it consuming us. I lost my family young and I see now the difference between an adult mind and a child's mind, coping with grief. Some times they can be very similar but some times you realize there are big differences. The pain is no less or no different, but survival is more important, and you realize you must focus on that. 

But that is also Kevin. He's spent the past 10 1/2 years trying to teach me a lot of things - and he did. More than I realized. Plenty of things he taught me I know he taught me. Like.

How to clean the chimney.

Tap trees, make maple syrup, use the winch, log, drive the tractor, run the generator, use hand and power tools, read a map, a compass... I can name a 1,000 things.

But plenty of things sunk in that I never realized, and all of those things are helping me now. 

But it's funny how you quickly miss the things that annoyed you the most - and not the things you expect.

He argued politics every. single. morning. I love a good debate. Even a good spat. We did it all the time. And not many people can hold a good debate - especially about politics, without loosing it. And some times he did. Or I did. But not often. Plus, we could handle each others tempers well. As of late we'd been disagreeing a bit more on some topics and had some great debates. I used to think every morning, "oh man, I haven't even had my coffee yet and I need to start debating..." and now, I'm debating politics with the dogs. Problem is, they don't answer, and they also pretty much agree with every thing I say. 

I also miss his tolerance level with me. Alone now, it doesn't matter. But he really did allow me to be myself. This is novel to me because of the age difference between us - we come from different times and while I was constantly surprising him in some ways, he was open to more of my beliefs and ideas than I would have thought. I'm grateful for that. It's so rare, and having got to experience it, I'll always know what it was like to have a partner who accepted me as me. Who tolerated my dogs, lambs in the living room in his recliner, and made me yule logs. 

I have really, really, been blessed in this life. I've dealt with a lot of big, bad, things, like most of us. A lot of it in a short time, and this is not what I want to be writing about, life after. I want to be writing a different post altogether. I want to be continuing the story I have been writing for years.

But no matter how long and difficult this road to healing will be - and it's a long road that requires tiny little steps all day, every day with a 1,000 stumbles... I remain grateful for all I've had. The experiences, the love. There was plenty of tough stuff, but it doesn't matter now. It really probably never did. 

The morning frost coating the ground, like thousands of tiny little shards of glass. So beautiful, and so delicate... A doe drinking out of the pond in the mist. The beaver swimming across the still water. Life is a cycle. We are all just part of it. All of us... and these things, equally as beautiful and important as the other. You realize how lucky you are to be breathing in the crisp air, to be able to see such beautiful things in front of you with clear and open eyes.

And you remember to just keep breathing.

If Kevin were here, he'd tell me to keep writing. He'd tell me the story isn't finished. Even if this chapter is going to be really tough to get through.

It's not "the end."

And I'd nod. And I'd know he's right.

Often he was. More than I'd like to admit. 

Comments

Dee said…
Again, I am so sorry for your loss. May you be blessed with better health and lots of help.
I am so pleased to see the tone of your writing, Donna. You are getting through it with gratitude for your relationship with Kevin, the life you built with him and I love the belief that the relationship continues, just in a different way. You write so beautifully...never stop. You continue to be blessed.
Anonymous said…
Beautiful. I too hope you won't stop writing.
Bobbi D. said…
Beautiful. (hugs)
Susan Joyce said…
An amazing woman, that is what you are. The first post that I read here was the previous post, Woodswoman. It so intrigued me, I went back and read many of the older posts. I also recommended your blog to friends. I have had many losses in the last few years (I am 67, and that's to be expected, but still I reel from the shock every time) and because my husband is not well, I think of being left alone after 46 years of marriage. You are setting an example for all of us who will face the loss of a partner. I am so glad I found you and please don't stop writing. I care and the world needs you! I also love your animals, We have a chihuahua, too, and I only wish we had room for a goat or two.

Thank you again, and sending you love,


Susan

You do not know me,,,, but we read your posts.
This was not a post you wanted to write,, but there is a place for it,, It is now.
And this post was meant for me to read.
Your real.. What you say is honest..
Your trying to be so brave... And Kevin would be proud of you.
Very nicely written.
Thank you for hitting the POST button
The JR said…
I'm so sorry that you lost Kevin. I know your life has changed so much. I know you can adjust, even if it takes a long time. Take care,
Susan said…
Out of all the stuff I read throughout the day, this was by far the best. It's inspiring, well written and filled with hope.

Always thinking of you.
Terra said…
I like how you wrote that if Kevin were here he would tell you to keep writing and that there is more to your story ahead. You are brave to continue on. Please do keep writing so we can hear how you are and how your story continues.

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