My husband’s body now fits in a small container. It’s just ashes….dust of a human.
His soul lives within me, where his love and light belongs. He is happy, alive, and well in the safety of my heart.
There is something truly surreal about holding cremains of anyone, but particularly those of someone you love more than anything. It’s frightening. It’s comforting. It’s everything in between.
I read in one of my many books on grief and/or widowhood, that dust can be a good thing. Dust, mixed with water, forms clay – which can be made into anything you want it to be. It just takes a little time and effort to get you from featherlight ashes to something concrete and tangible.
I’m struggling with this concept. How could anything good come from dust? Isn’t dust the result of things that crumble? Like the world of a hopeful, happy, young woman, for example?
Yesterday, we buried a part of Luke’s cremains.
Mark that on the list of Things 25 Year-Olds Should Never Have to Do for Their Spouse. Or for anyone, for that matter. This list is becoming really lengthy, but if you’d like the PDF version, my email is in the contact section of this blog.
I want you to know that this really is as bad as you think it is. This really is the worst thing that can happen to a person. Losing the love of your life is absolutely as earth-shatteringly painful as you could try and imagine it would be.
Prior to this experience, I would hear about immense tragedies and react with the phrase, “I don’t know how you could come back from that.” Well, I do now. You don’t come back from it. You never come back, but instead you move forward as someone would when they get hit with the trauma train — covered in scars, filled with every emotion a person can feel, and deeply changed by the experience.
When you have to tell the staff of an ICU that your soulmate is DNR because you know that’s what he would want you to do, you don’t come back from it.
When you lay down next to your breathing, yet lifeless best friend kissing his cheek because there are too many tubes to reach his lips, knowing it will be the very last time you do that, you don’t come back from it.
When you drive away from the last place your person was alive and enter an icy, lonely, and dark new world, knowing you will never feel his arms around you ever again, you don’t come back from it.
When you smell his now tear-stained pillowcase, nauseous at the thought that it soon won’t smell like him anymore, you don’t come back from it.
When you wake up from having a dream that you are still a happily married woman with her loving husband by her side only to be quickly shocked with the unadulterated Hell that is your reality, you don’t come back from it.
When you stare at the hole in the dirt that his ashes are to go into, the one that matches the gaping void in your heart, you don’t come back from it.
When your husband’s body is now dust, you don’t come back from it.
You will never come back from any of it; you grow into someone entirely new…because of it.