When Jury Duty Comes Along
Today when I got the mail, there was an enveloped addressed to Charles. Initially it wasn't a big deal because he still gets junk magazines from time to time and essentially I've gotten over the shock of seeing his name when least expected. This envelope was different though, I know it wasn't "junk mail" because the return address was a local court house. I opened to find a jury duty summons. My deceased husband is to report for jury duty in a month. Because that's doable.
Much like a lot of other legal things I've had to endure, this irked me because shouldn't they have this shit on file somewhere?? I mean, it's part of the legal system...when they pull up his name it should say deceased. But of course nothing is that easy. I put the letter into my purse so that when I'm on my break tomorrow at work, I can call the handy-dandy number listed at the bottom and give them the explanation of why Charles will not be reporting for Jury duty next month.
After I put it into my purse, I went outside to water the grass and play with Kaleb. As I'm enjoying the peaceful and muggy evening, I started thinking about the jury duty summons. And all the other legal battles I've had in the last year. And then slowly crept up, were other anger issues that were recognizable and familiar to me.
You see, that's kinda how this whole process works. You take a few steps forward in the grieving process and then suddenly, JURY DUTY hits you in the face and you feel like you're back a few steps, even after a lengthy amount of time.
I stood there watering the grass, letting the mosquitos feast on my legs that were nicely lotioned up this morning with the sweet scent of honeysuckle, a mosquitos chosen cuisine, and it came to me, anger - we need to admit the things we're angry about if we are ever expected to get over them.
In this 2+ years, I've had my fair share of conversations with counselors, family, and very close friends. I've discussed why I'm angry. I've yelled and screamed. I've even randomly texted blurbs to people of why I'm just so damn angry. I've been completely honest with my spoken words but I've never put them here, in this space. As mentioned a million times now, this space is a lot for me but A LOT for others. If it's going to help, inspire, heal, encourage, or even guide, then I have to give you everything, even if its little by little.
In my very first post about Charles committing suicide, I was very defending of him. I made sure you knew I was at an understanding with what he had done. And I still am, 100%. I'm still at that place. But I haven't always been there. There are what I'm calling, 'JURY DUTY' moments when I'm not necessarily taken back to those moments, but reminded that they were there and reminded of how they felt.
Death in general is such a jacked up thing for your emotions; throw in a suicide on top of that and you've got yourself a string of shit storms that are so crazy, they haven't even come up with a name for them yet. Trust me, I'm working on it.
As of right now, I'm going to say anger has taken up a good amount of them. I'm here to tell you, if you've been through this, you know there is like seventeen types of anger and then like twenty-five different levels of those seventeen. Fa Real.
It's important for me to let you have a glimpse of what my anger looked like because maybe it's what yours looked like or what yours looks like currently and then you can be like, okay, I'm not crazy.
My first anger came within seconds of finding out. I was pissed. It was a denial-anger. You're too fucking angry to even grasp what actually happened. You're far to angry to look at the end picture, to see the painful loss, to understand what kind of hurt will come over you in a couple months time. I was SO pissed at him. If I could have punched him, I would have. No really, I wanted to beat the shit out of him, until he couldn't walk anymore. I was so pissed for Kaleb. I was pissed for his family; for his friends. I was pissed for my family; for my friends.
That initial anger is just so tainted. It's tainted with our selfish thoughts. Our minds are so in shock that we immediately revert to an emotion we can grasp and I just really believe that one emotion is anger.
As time passed so many other things came up that I was angry about:
I was angry that he left me to be a single mom. Absolutely I was SO mad at him about that.
I was angry that he did it 4 days after my 30th birthday and just one day after father's day.
I was so mad at him for not thinking about who would teach Kaleb how to fish and hunt.
I was pissed at him because he wasn't going to be Kaleb's t-ball coach.
I was furious with him because he left me with having to explain why he would miss Kaleb's first 'donuts with dad' at daycare.
I was beyond mad and frustrated with him because he left without having a will and the amount of time I've had to spend straightening out legal things has been a damn nightmare.
I was mad at him for not telling me the code to the gun safe.
I was mad at him because he never wore the cologne I bought him and now I was forced to throw it away.
I was upset with him because he didn't leave any instructions about what he wanted me to do with all his things.
I was mad AT him for being bipolar.
-That last one, ya'll. I've been there and I was there for a long time. I still revisit that every time I watch Kaleb lose his cool over the smallest things. I still visit that anger when I think about the possibilities of our son inheriting the disease and when I think about the long road I might have ahead of me, dealing with depression, at the very least. I have been so furious at him, for the most ridiculous things and actually, I think it's perfectly normal. Had he killed himself on something irrelevant like Columbus day, I'd still be like, "Why did you do that on such a holiday???" We find things to be angry at to cop. I mean, I've even been made at him because he isn't here to trim the dogs nails and I can't do it with one hand. You see, it doesn't matter what you find to blame them for, the important part is that you find that anger and you get it out. You tell someone. You shout it OUT that you're pissed they left you when the ice-maker broke, or when your car needs new tires. It's okay to blame them for a while. You have that right. God doesn't expect anything less.
Just because I've gotten to a place of forgiveness and understanding, doesn't mean I've been there since day one and it doesn't mean I don't drift back there from time to time....it means, I know at some point 'JURY DUTY' is headed my way and I'll show up for it, but I'll also kick it in the ass.