Who am I?

In my twenties, I had an imaginary friend. That’s right. Not when I was four or seven or even twelve, but all through my twenties and early thirties. I believed a spirit was talking to me, a spirit who claimed we had shared past lives and were soul mates.

In early 2002, my world stopped and I saw that delusion for what it was — in part, a way for me to hide from the world and not risk my heart in a real relationship. I got into therapy and did a lot of inner work, mostly through journaling, to restore my sanity.

Two years later, on an internet dating site, I met my true soul mate.  His name was Mike, and he was everything I’d ever wanted in a partner — sensitive, intelligent, creative, passionate. We fell in love, and we also became best friends. Both artists, we had everything in common from politics to religious views to similar childhoods. There was nothing we couldn’t talk about, no secrets we couldn’t share with each other. For the first time in our lives, we both knew what it meant to be fully understood and loved unconditionally. We were married on April 24, 2009.

Nine days ago, my world stopped again.  My husband and soul mate gave up his lifelong struggle with clinical depression and ended his life at the age of 44.

I don’t know how to do this… how to make a life without him. The desire to believe that he’s still with me in spirit is great, but it’s too dangerous for me to go there. I know myself, and that way lies delusion and denial. And I know Mike, who helped me understand the truth of my past delusions, would be disappointed in me if I took refuge in those old habits.

This blog, which I intend to keep for one year, is an effort to keep myself honest and sane as I navigate the dark, murky forests of grief.


5 Responses to “Who am I?”

  1. I hope that this journey that you are making through grief will help you to emerge into the light of newness someday; that there still is promise in the life ahead of you. That you are surrounded by those that care about you and support you.

    Best of wishes as you go forth…..

  2. So brave and wise you are. Such a heart full of grief, but full of gratitude, even in the face of such sadness and trauma. I will be faithfully following your journey and lending my heart’s love out to you. May you find peace and love once again in your life.

  3. I know that there are no words to help, but there is light again.

  4. hi.

    i’ve just read every entry of your blog. i am tremendously moved by your courage, strength and consistency in perseverance. i fear that i will not be able to resist the compulsion of suicide for much longer and i read works like yours as a deterrent. i need to hear your struggle, grief and inventory of everything that has been stolen from you (and so many others…) to ground myself in a resolve to be strong and present for my family and myself.

    thank you for all of your posts and your naked account of unparalleled grief. your work here may save lives.

    any empathy i can foster for my very much loved ones through experiencing (hypothetically) what they might encounter in the wake of their loss of me is another day that i hold on tight and grit my teeth through my intoxicated sleep and open my eyes again for another day.

    as a fucking libra, my scales have to balance. i have to see the side of life that my death would leave in it’s wake to appreciate a whole perspective upon which fair decision making can occur.

    your work here is of tremendous value beyond what you profit from it. thank you..

    you should be filled with pride. i am totally in awe of your competency and rationality in the face of tremendous, senseless tragedy.

    please continue to take the best of care of yourself.

  5. Hi – I’m Andrea from the Soaring Spirits Loss Foundation (www.sslf.org). We are interested in adding your blog to the blog roll on the resource page of our website. Please email me at info@sslf.org to let me know the best way to contact you so we can discuss the possibility of adding your blog. Thank you so much.

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