When you’ve lost someone that you love, life becomes a minefield. You hear someone say their name, hear your song, smell a scent that you associate with them, or your mind just wanders to a random memory and your day is ruined. Over time, things bother you less, but they never truly go away.
In a way, this pandemic was a blessing because I’ve been self-isolating so much that I rarely encounter unplanned things. Since I am not around people or their whatnot, I don’t get surprised with reminders as often. But COVID-19 conspired to hit me with my latest drive-by encounter with grief.
I got Covid back in January and am still struggling with shortness of breath, brain fog, and exhaustion. One tool that I’ve been using to help with the exhaustion is YouTube videos. They don’t make me less tired, but they help me stay awake. These days, if I nap during the day, I can’t sleep at all at night.
I choose videos that are long enough that I can stay focused on them, but short enough that I won’t drift off to snooze-land.
Late yesterday afternoon, I was watching some lady go through a weird theme park in Asia. Her husband is her cameraman and as they were waiting to catch the train back to the city they were staying in, he wandered off to a little shop at the station without telling her.
When he got back she made some exclamation about the snacks he had bought and he asked her, “Is that okay.”
My late boyfriend used to ask me that frequently and this guy said it with the same vocal intonation that my late boyfriend always used.
No, I have no idea why a grown-ass adult felt the need to seek approval from me and it wasn’t anything we ever discussed. He had a shitty mother, and he didn’t like to talk about the emotional scars from that, so I didn’t push. For some reason, he sought my approval, so I always gave it to him.
But hearing that phrase in that tone just wrecked me. I was messed up yesterday and I’ve been messed up for a lot of today.
It is just further proof that, for me, time does not heal. Time helps me get used to the pain. This is my normal now and usually, it is not overwhelming, but sometimes it comes out of nowhere and knocks me on my ass.