We are on a ship.
Why are we on a ship again????
Didn't I just have this dream? Except this ship is different. It's
smaller. It's going to an unknown place and as it glides p
ast the shore... takes a turn and is now plowing into the land. But it's not... it's gliding.
I am in my cabin. John is on the bed. He is sitting there. He starts to talk to me... "Autumn, I am trying this again... but it just isn't going to work. I can't do this. I can't be with you."
I begin to plead and beg. "Don't do this John!"
My body flies off the boat into the sky. I am looking at the ocean from the sky. The boat is now small and white. My heart is breaking in half. Again. John is leaving me yet again.
And then I wake up.
Happy Birthday, Autumn.
Today is my birthday. Today is my golden birthday.
I can't stand to be awake. I need to go back to sleep and see John. I need to convince him to come back to me. Why does he always try to leave me in my dreams?! It's a horrible feeling. It's like breaking my heart over and over again. My brain is trying to convince me this is what happened. It's trying to make things easier. No, Autumn... you didn't find him dead. He left you. My brain is trying to re-write history.
My brain is wrong.
Dreams are dreams... they aren't real.
The reality of it all is that John and I were in the happiest time of our lives. We were never so in love than at the point of his death. He would have never left me. And I would have never left him.
Fuck these dreams.
And on my birthday? Fucking really?
FUCK THIS SHIT.
I decide to lay in the bed and sleep again.
Dreams not remembered. worthless.
I stay in the bed until noon. I'll just go ahead and sleep this birthday away.
But I did get up. My nieces made me oatmeal. We played rock band. We stayed in and talked, laughed... my sister in law came home with a fever. :(
My nieces made pancakes for dinner.
We put a candle in one and I blew it out. I am sure you can guess what I wished for. Definitely not for another year like this one. And I almost feel bad saying that. Because really the beginning of my year was FANTASTIC. It's so shitty the best part of my life and the worst part of my life were in the same year... I mean really they were only 17 days apart. How unfair.
But 2011 brings hope.
This is me trying to convince myself.
And I guess I could be bitter about being 27 and starting my life all over again.
And I am actually.
A lot of my friends my age are married, pregnant, successful... perhaps some of them not as happy as they seem to be. But that's not always what they post on their facebook. So, what I see is everyone around me having a better life than me. As I inch towards 30 this is NOT where I ever imagined myself being at 27. This isn't where I should be. Apparently I can't plan my life. Apparently it is out of my control.
27 years. 6 of them spent with my love.
Who will be fortunate enough to spend the next years of my life with me?
A strong man for sure. That has to deal with my shit. My "baggage." John is not the baggage. Widowhood is the baggage. Being labled like I am wearing some God forsaken scarlet letter. Instead of an A lets just go ahead and paste a big red W on my chest.
And it amazes me. My progress.
I told myself I would NOT be celebrating my birthday this year. That I was going to skip it....
And yet this may be one of my biggest birthdays to date.
A dinner. 6:30pm.
Over 25 guests.
All there for me.
My loved ones. My friends. The people who have pulled me through... who are still pulling me out of the darkness. The ones that encourage me. The ones that stay in contact with me. The ones that call me and invite me out. The ones that wish that they could do for me.
I am actually looking forward to it.
Of course there will be an obvious absence of presence in the room.
It won't be mentioned I am guessing.
But everyone will feel it.
Where is John?
Where are my flowers? Where is my birthday kiss? Who will occupy his seat next to me at the dinner table?
Who will occupy that empty hole in my heart?
Who will one day take on the task of loving me. This broken girl. This shattered woman. This mess. This beautiful mess of a person. Who is going to save me... tell me it's ok... and show me the light again?
Strong man. Strong, patient man. I pray for you.
I read the Bible tonight with my nieces... I always find myself heading towards 1 Corinthians to read the passage about love. To torture myself? Maybe.
But then I read the line "Love never dies."
You're right. It doesn't. My love for John will always stay ignited inside my heart and soul. I can make space for another. For the Bible does say the most important thing is to love extravagantly.
The greatest of these is love.
I am a person full of love. Love that I want to share. Love that will go on and fill others... family, friends, and eventually.... a lover.
And so I am walking out to the water... and I am putting my toe towards the edge... and dipping it in slightly. Am I prepared to test the water? If I dive in I could drown. So, I will stay towards the shore.... until I am ready for a plunge.
Happy Birthday to me.