Thursday, May 20, 2010

What Remains

Picking up my wife's ashes from the funeral home was not on my life "to do" list, at least not for a long time. Yet there I was. Arm-in-arm with her mom, we stepped heavily into the lobby and were escorted to the library. After a few moments Neil, the funeral director assigned to us, walked in with a linen box and papers to sign. Amy's mom and I hugged and cried. We signed the papers, took the box and cried some more. Yet a peculiar peace entered me. An unfamiliar calmness.

I brought Amy home and put her on my dresser. Where she finally rests, we will someday determine, but for now, it will do. The place at least provides a focal point for me to direct my conversations with her.

It's strange the comfort of hugging a box of ashes. I was not expecting that. Yet when I explained to my two boys that we had brought mommy's ashes home, they immediately asked to see them, and when they did, the oldest wanted to hug the box too. We three boys hugged Amy and hugged each other and cried. Cried many, many tears.

13 comments:

  1. It's strange where I find comfort these days, where I feel my husband's presence and where I don't. I'm glad you've found a place and a peace in bringing her ashes home, for both you and your boys.

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  2. I love that you have decided to blog about this... I have just started and it's been two years. I think this will be a very good way to process everything, and get help from a community of people that sort of understand what you are going through.

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  3. How do you go about setting up a blog here> It has been 3 years for me and I keep thinking I would like to post my thoughts where I feel safe and not judged for not getting on with life to the fullest.

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  4. I'm sorry for your loss Johnny. I lost my wife to cancer in 2005. Our kids were 20, 17 and 12. I tried to start a blog a couple of times but I couldn't think of anything to say besides "it fucking sucks". A writer, I am not.

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  5. Welcome to the blogging world for widows/widowers. Sorry you are part of this sad new world. I'll be following your journey as I go through mine.

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  6. I'm sorry for you loss. It is a difficult journey, and we find comfort where we never expect it.

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  7. I'm sorry for your loss. My husband died 14 months ago today and I also have two boys. I remember hugging my husband's ashes a lot and they sat on his dresser for months until it was time to follow his wishes. I can totally relate to how comforting it is to have them around. Just one more thing that those who haven't been through cannot relate to.

    I'm sorry you are now part of this community but welcome. Blogging has been very helpful to me as I make my way through this new, unwanted life. I look forward to following your blog.

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  8. I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my husband just over two years ago.

    His ashes are still sitting on top of the TV stand where I can look at him. Not sure what I will do with his ashes yet...not sure I even want to THINK about that yet.

    Take care.

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  9. I'm so sorry for your loss. I lost my boyfriend (that I'd expected to marry) last November. Loss of the one you love most is the hardest of all hard things, I think...

    Memory eternal to your wife. May God carry you and your boys. Much love to you.

    (((((HUGS))))

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  10. You have found a healthy way to grieve and have a gift of writing that helps those of us mourning and walking along beside you and the boys feel closer to her and feel like we are still near her because we have you, her loves. Thank you for being so honest and open. A big and long cyber (((((HUG)))))

    Jessica

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  11. Keep on keepin' on... This is a never-ending journey I suspect. Your boys are lucky to have such a loving dad. Thank god for children who keep us moving forward.

    www.thesusie.blogspot.com

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  12. John,
    Amy and I were birth colleagues for several years before I moved away, not long after BOA was formed and the need for a new birth center in our community arose. I am so saddened, flattened by your loss. I feel so useless to you and the boys and the community she left behind, being so far away in Portland, OR now. I just wanted you to know that I'm reading your blog, getting the LHH news and support requests and thinking of you regularly. I send my love to you and your boys and wish you all peace.

    Larissa

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  13. John -
    I'm happy to share stories of that beautiful girl Amy that married you. I miss her, I cry, it makes it hard to breathe sometimes. When I feel like this I think she'd tilt her head to the side, grab a pen and pad of paper, and then come up with some energizing thought for the next few minutes speaking as fast as her brain would allow her too. She was a driving force -- her and I sat together at all the WDCSITE functions there may have been. It didn't matter what we were there for just that we got to hang out together. We had a lot in common and I think she felt at ease around me. I will carry forth her grace and poise and wanted to let you know that I carry her in my mind and heart.

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