The Shape of My Heart

It goes with me everywhere. I can't go anywhere without a well-meaning inquirer asking how we're doing. How was your summer? Did you enjoy your trip to California? How's your daughter? Most of the time I just laugh and say that we're doing alright. Our summer was hot. My trip to California was equal parts wonderful and awful. My daughter is doing as well as she can be. I am reminded that people are watching.

Not too far from the surface, there's this part of me that wants to rail against the state of things. Most of the time I'm busy and I can deflect the hurt, but when I'm truly alone for a few seconds, or if the house gets quiet, or if I even step foot in the church, it descends upon me. My heart rebels against the careful securities of my mind and it opens up and all the well springs pour out. I can't help it.

Right now I'm directed at my pain tolerance levels. Kinda like when you're in the hospital and the staff comes by and asks you to put a number to your pain and then they ask if you want something to manage it. I don't think I've ever reported a 10, usually I categorize my pain somewhere around a 5 and I'm seriously wondering if a 2 or 3 should even be talked about. I mean, do we ever walk around with 0 pain? What does that feel like? Even on my wedding day, I could have registered a good solid 4.

And then there's the pain management. Its there to help us endure, to help us make it through and here in the midst of this pain, I'm wondering what I'm really feeling. Is it straight up unmedicated hurt or is this dulled somehow. There are days, like today where I think that if it doesn't stop hurting, then well I really don't know what, but I wish it would stop.

Today is a hard one, we've celebrated a few minor holidays, some birthdays and such, and our lost ones could have had a really good reason not to be there to join in in our merriment. But today, Alex wouldn't have missed this day, it would have been his first wedding anniversary. He should be taking my daughter out for dinner, or cooking it for her like he loved to do, and buying her roses and talking about how rough the last year was, but he's not. And my pain intolerance soars, as I can't just stand back and enjoy life as usual today.

Today will go on and I will live through and tomorrow will come. But right now my heart is a pile of mush and my legs are noodles and my eyes are fountains of tears. Joy will come in the morning and I wait on that.


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