Well, I did it! It only took me three and half years to conjure up the strength and willpower to sell my deceased husband’s truck; but, I finally did. This might seem silly and insignificant to some; however for me, this was a huge step. The crazy thing is I only drove it once in nine years. It wasn’t my vehicle. Nevertheless, it was a predominant factor in our married and family life. It encompassed a multitude of treasured memories and cherished moments.
The first harrowing year after my husband’s death, when I was thrown into the dark abyss, I used to just sit in my husband’s truck. My hands glided over the steering wheel in attempts to capture the essence of where his steadfast, champion hands used to be. His aroma still lingered as I would listen to his favorite songs, and recollect all the adventures that transpired from within the truck walls.
The last time I sat in his truck, I noticed down by the corner of the passenger seat a fortune cookie message. My heart skipped a beat, as no one had driven the truck and I had never laid eyes on it before. I unraveled it. The words of faux wisdom profoundly spoke to me, “…it is time to move forward.” I felt David’s presence reassuring me to forge ahead.
Practical reality sunk in. I was paying a lot for insurance. I needed to sell it. On the other hand, emotionally, the thought of selling it paralyzed me in utter anguish. I had to tap into my faith, my key to sanity. I had to recognize my resistance and make a definitive goal. This quote echoed in my mind: “If you can’t go in leaps and bounds, then go in baby steps and nudges, but keep moving forward!” -Doe Zantamata.
Unfortunately, my stress level continued to rise as I worried about losing another part of my husband. Grief for me has been such a turbulent crossroad of absorption, adjustment, remembering, honoring, letting go, letting it be, and attempting to navigate and re-build a new life. I had to reframe this event to see the growth. I had to realize that I was not closing the book, just turning the page. That what my soul has once known, I will never forget. That love lives on forever.
As the selling day unfolded, I was a mess. My husband and I had made all of our decisions in unison. I was literally shaking as my orderly world of predictability, structure, and comfort has been altered. Could I do this?
As I was at the bank making the sale, terror set in. All the horrifying feelings of releasing my husband’s cold and limp hands ran rampant in my mind. It felt as if I was losing him all over again. At the same time, I had a flashback of my husband and I teaching our oldest daughter, when she was three, to cross the monkey bars. She was so afraid, shaking her adorable head, and telling us, “No, I can’t do this, I can’t let go!” My husband was so calm and encouraging to her. Finally, she did it! She beamed and hugged us as she got down and exclaimed, “That was easy!”
As grief is not a task to finish, each day, I am learning to welcome life’s lessons as I reiterate to myself, “Just breathe in and breathe out, repeat, and remember that moving forward means taking one step at a time.”
Have you experienced a similar grief transition? How did you handle it? As always, I am thankful that you took the time to read my blog. Time after time, I am humbled with gratitude by your comments and wisdom. Please feel free to comment and/or share.
Dear Heavenly Father, Please help me to come to the realization that I don’t have to have everything all figured out to move forward. That I can continue to look back and thank you and look forward and trust you. –Amen
With Blessings and Grace to You,
Lisa Dempsey Bargewell
My next blog will be on August 19th.