Well, strictly speaking, I’m “cured” of the bout of pneumonia that knocked me off my feet and significantly limited my ability to work for nearly two weeks. I could whine about the on-going cough and exhaustion, but everyone else is dealing with the same crap, so that’s nothing new.
There’s not a whole lot else to talk about lately… haven’t even heard from Johnny in a month… not even a whiff of cigarette smoke. But then, it’s hard to be open to messages when I’ve felt like I was going to cough up a lung at any moment.
A couple of nights ago I went out in back of the house to throw a ball to Millie – her favorite activity. John would throw that ball over and over, and his aim was always straight and true… it would land in the same place every single time, unlike mine. I never know where it’s gonna end up, bouncing off a tree, or way off the path, or even dropping it before I can actually get a throw delivered. It’s kind of okay, because Millie is older now and I worry about pushing her to run as far and as fast as she did when she and Johnny would play, even though she wants to..
Ah, but I just went off on a tangent.
So I went out back in the evening. It was dusk, the end of a beautiful crisp fall day. The air at the edge of our woods smelled… just like it did three years ago. Inhaling that air brought it all back.
The night John disappeared was rainy and soggy, but the next day brought sunshine and the kind of autumn day in Maine we all yearn for. And oh how I hoped to find him alive, just the victim of a stupid or clumsy accident out in those woods.
One week and one day from now will make three years. I do not miss him any less. I still wear my wedding rings on my left hand along with his wedding band, and if you see me with a tree of life pendant around my neck, which I wear several days a week, it’s because that pendant has a tiny urn of his ashes in it.
And every day that goes by, I remember one more thing I did that failed him.
I know i did many things right. But they aren’t as easy to remember as the ones I got wrong.
I’ve gotten messages from him that friends have described as “extraordinary”, and I know that he’ll be there when it’s my time, and that my miserable failings are understood and accepted as part of being human.
But it doesn’t take away the hurts that I inflicted unintentionally while he was still here; such as the times when I was “too busy” to listen, or disappointed him because I brought home Chinese take-out with no meat in it (because it was one of those days when I was unable to put aside my own needs for his).
As time goes on, I find that I am more patient with people’s failings when they’re trying to do well, and far more irritated by people who are deliberately being assholes, and that includes myself.
Greed, self-aggrandizement, hatred and/or fear of others because they’re different… it’s all so very stupid and tiresome. Love really is the only thing that matters.
In memory of my beloved husband John Kelly Snyder… 20 Sept 1956 – 21 Oct 2016.
My Johnny was a true warrior, fighting demons no one else could see. I thought he was the strongest man in the world, and perhaps he was, but tragically, the demons got the better of him.
The name of this project is in no way intended to be reflective of, or piggy back off, Wounded Warriors which serves those military personnel wounded after September 11, 20o1. Like too many others, John was a warrior long before then.
Fair winds and following seas, Husband.
We now have a group on Facebook to help find resources, support and ideas for getting The Grief Warrior Project off the ground. You can find us there at https://www.facebook.com/groups/thewarriorproject/
Follow us on Twitter! @WarriorProjME.
Help support The Grief Warrior Project by making purchases from Heritage Collectibles, Books & Maps. All profits (after expenses) go to helping us help others. You can find Heritage Collectibles at https://heritagecollectiblesmaine.com, on Facebook (both a group and a page) and on Twitter (HeritageGifts).
Beginning September 23, 2019, you will be able to call in for grief support from Linda Snyder, M.S. The fee is $40 per phone hour (50 minutes), payable in advance via PayPal (use LSnyder@regroupbiz.com as the Pay To email address) with times available as follows:
Mondays – Fridays, 4:00 am and 5:00 am EST
Wednesdays, 3:00 pm, 4:00 pm, 5:00 pm and 6:00 pm EST
Fridays & Saturdays, 9:00 pm and 10:00 pm EST.
Just go to https://regroupbusinesssolutions.fullslate.com/ where you can sign up! (It’s a bit confusing because there’s loads of writing to wade through, but if you go to the bottom left hand corner where it says “Online Scheduling” and click on the link that says “Grief Support Services”, it will take you to the calendar where you can choose an appointment time and sign up.
Talk to you soon!
Despite decades of disbelief, I have come to realize that our loved ones are able to communicate with us through the life/death barrier. My Johnny has proved this in ways that I can’t attribute to my own mind making things up… there have been complex coincidences and synchronicities, extraordinary happenings, and messages through others who could not possibly have any knowledge of the information they’ve passed on. Truly mind-blowing stuff. I don’t have a clue what I believe about life after death, but I know my husband loved me with everything he had, and that he still does. Our wedding vows were “to death and beyond” and that has proved true for both of us.
I can’t tell you how it all works, or how you can get through to your own loved one, but if you’re interested, I can tell you of my experiences and my thoughts on this.