Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 in a Nutshell

Well, I made it!  I survived a whole year without my love by my side.   It had its ups and downs, but in the end I'm still here and standing.  It's crazy to think.. an entire year.  A full year too.. homecoming, memorial service, congressional record, blog awards.. not too shabby!

Christmas came and went and I did pretty well.  By the end of Christmas day I had one of my infamous meltdowns about Josh being gone.. it was a little rough.  I at least had someone with me to just hold me and let me cry about it.  When it comes down to it its better to get it out then to hold it in.  I still like to think I can be tough and hold it, buttttt that usually doesn't work well.  The holidays are always harder and the void is a little larger than usual.  It's a good time to remember and that usually leads to my tears.  It's getting better though.. a little at a time.

My 2011 started off with this in February:

The homecoming that was supposed to be mine, but wasn't.  It was a rough day.  In the end it was something I needed to do for myself.  Face the harsh realities of war.  I remember that feeling.. almost an out of body experience.  Standing there watching girls run into their husbands/boyfriends/fiances arms while I stood back with tears in my eyes.  It sucked.  For some reason though it was comforting like he was there with them.

The memorial service followed homecoming and it was just as hard.  Lots of tears and that hour felt like an eternity.  All of the families of the fallen along with 2/9 joined together to remember each hero and their sacrifice.  It was really well done and I was so proud to be there.

Shortly after, in March to be exact, something changed in my  life.  Blog people.. This is Jeff

Jeff's the "new guy" around these parts.  Not officially a boyfriend because, well, I'm a pain in the ass and being a widow makes me whacky.  I still have a really hard time thinking about cancelling my Facebook relationship with Josh and letting go of the fact that he was my boyfriend for so long and supposed to be my husband someday. 

Anyways, Jeff is a good guy.  He's really patient with me and my hesitation to move on even though we both know that I have to at some point.  He understands and respects the fact that Josh was and always will be a part of my life.  He doesn't get mad when I talk about it.. just listens and offers a word when he can.  He holds me when I want to cry and calms me down in the end.  He knows when I'm holding back tears and is the first one to say just let it out.  I really can't complain.

It's been a big help to have someone there when I need them and to put a smile back on my face.  It's crazy to think about how much changes in a short period of time, but in the end I have to be thankful.  My biggest fear after Josh died was being alone for the rest of my life.. that no one would want me because I was already taken or I'm "broken" now.  It's comforting to know that people do look past that and even though something so tragic happened in my life it won't consume me forever. 

I know that even though it felt like a part of me died when Josh did that I can let that take over my life completely.  There's time to mourn and to heal and at some point to move forward.  I know that Josh would never want me to live my life like a hermit crab and alone.  He never wanted that for me.  Who would want that?

It's still very difficult to be with.   Allowing myself to be close with someone else takes it tolls some days.  There are days when it's okay and days when I'm freaking out and can't do it.  Life as a widow I suppose.  It's hard.. for him too.  Sometimes I wonder why he puts up with it because I can be a real crazy person, but he manages.  It'll all work out I suppose.

I'm not really sure what 2012 is going to have in store for me, but I hope some good things.  I'll graduate college in May and head out into the adult world.  After that I'm not sure.  Other than hoping to go on a trip next December.  I'll keep you all updated as I continue along my path.

Tomorrow would have been 6 years for me and Josh.  It seems like forever ago when he asked me out.  Crazy how things are so different and not how we imagined.  I think he'd be proud of where I am.  Standing with my head up and pushing through the days.  "That's my girl," is exactly what he would say <3

Have a safe and happy new year!