I stopped counting the Tuesdays long ago. I decided it was just keeping me from getting stronger so I stopped. But there is no denying today’s number. It’s 52. 52 Tuesdays since the worst day. The change of scenery in the last few months has worked wonders for my mental health. I feel like I can breathe. I feel like the cloud of widow doesn’t follow me with eyes of pity everywhere I go. I don’t hide it. I talk about it–most of the time I tell the story without blubbering (last weekend not withstanding.) But I don’t feel like it is the first thing people think of when they see me like I did in the last few months of home.
I know tomorrow is going to be messy. I’m ok with that. A lot of “helpers” have told me what I should do…I think stemming from their own fear for my emotions. There will be crying. There will be meatballs and hopefully a cannoli. There will be Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto and Lily Allen. Darla will go out for a ride. There will be a Starbucks iced coffee with hazelnut (ew.) There will be Old Westminster. There will be looking at pictures, reading cards, laughing, and remembering.
October 21st will always have such a tumultuous meaning. It will also, at some point, be a date in time that will hold less power over me. When that time will come, I do not know.
In 52 Tuesdays, I have learned that grace is the only way. Giving it freely, receiving it humbly. When we open our hearts and let it all spill out, it is our truest friends who will help pick up the pieces and patchwork us back together. And, it is also the countless unrecognized prayers from all over the world, that are felt in moments of despair. Love, patience, grace, and community are the reason I am able to stand up, each day, and know that I can move forward.