The fury kids had their annual check-up today. We had a discussion with the vet about how they are handling not having Archie home. He explained that animals grieve, too, but we already knew that.
Molly is just Molly. She is so self focused I don’t even know if she realizes Archie isn’t here. Max is uneasy. He chews on everything, casings around the door, the door, blankets, he is always nervous.
Dash, Archie’s dog is….perfect. It’s almost like he doesn’t want me to hurt so he listens to every command. He wants to sit either on my lap or beside me whenever I’m home. He follows me from room to room, just in case I feel like petting him. He’s always there, as if trying to make up for the loss of someone who isn’t…..
We haven’t been to the cemetery since we watched them lower Arch into the ground. That was so very hard. Silence, but for the hum of the crane, and tears. I didn’t want to breath again…. .
The pup’s (they are all nine, btw) appointment was in Wakarusa, where Archie and my mom are. I asked Taylor if we could go to visit “dad” after. She kinda gave me a look, I think partly because we had the fury kids and the other because she knew how hard it would be for me.
When my mom passed, three years ago, I visited her grave often immediately after the funeral, then monthly to change her flowers. With Archie….it’s different. Taylor and I still don’t feel like this is really real. Everything is still a mess with death benefit rollover to pay bills, medical bills–starting to get calls on the answering machine and they aren’t even 30 days out, just life, and it’s like he’s just at work. “Mom’s” battling the bills, because that was what “mom” does, so dad can put his energy and time into work. That’s the way things worked. Soooo, the more the battle, the more normal this feels. Until we visit the grave yard….. .
At first I was very excited because they had poured the footer for his stone. They said they had to wait until the ground was thawed and that probably wouldn’t be until May. Their goal was to have it set by Memorial Day. My birthday is mid May…. . I asked if they could please have it set by the 15th. He looked at the calendar, counted some days, and said he thought they could have it done.
This is only MARCH!!! They are waaay ahead of schedule and I was so pleased. I practically jumped out of the van to take a picture! But then it hit me, this is Archie’s permanent address. He’s never coming home again. I’m crying just typing this. I wasn’t ready for that wave of emotion. Yesterday’s door just closed.
He is with my heavenly Dad, and I know that in my heart. I will see him again, someday, but for now his body, whatever remains, has a different physical address than mine. I never thought that through. Shattered….again.
At Grief Share this week one person shared the one thing they missed most was what their family member would be like NOW. That hit Taylor hard. “Dad will always be 46. He will never grow older. There will never be more pictures with dad or of dad.” Tears… .
We have taken our first step: Grief share. We would never have made it there had it not been for the healing hands of Heartfelt Creations who carried use when we puddled and were unable to walk for ourselves. They still do and we will never be able to thank them enough.
Later when we were coming home a familiar song was playing on the radio. I’ve heard it many times, but with the realization of today, I cried all the way through. Since Arch communicated through music, I thought today I’d share:
Honesty here: I am not yet able to say Goodbye…. . Today, ever-so-painfully, my heavenly Dad revealed: Archie doesn’t live here anymore. I am still trying to absorb that as I close my eyes and tell my heart to beat again… .