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Grief is Paralyzing

I know an apology isn’t necessary, but I'm a people pleaser and I’m sorry I haven’t written anything in the last couple of months. We’re quickly approaching two years since Lindsay was diagnosed with colon cancer and five months since she passed, and I still cannot believe it. Yesterday I had the Facebook memory of our first date after Ellis was born, which was also our last normal night together because the next day she started experiencing the abdominal pain that lead to her cancer diagnosis a week later.

7/6/2019 - Date Night at Red House in Renton

I’ve continued to cope by keeping myself uncomfortably busy (my new catchphrase), which is not difficult with work, keeping the kids alive, and keeping the house together, but it also prevents me from feeling anything too deeply. Lindsay always liked to describe me as a duck in water - I look calm on the surface but my feet are rapidly moving

I still feel as though Lindsay could walk through the front door at any moment and this nightmare would be over. I also recently had my first vivid dream from which I awoke and expected to find Lindsay laying next to me (but of course, she wasn’t). I’ve made very few steps in moving forward - her toothbrush is still next to mine, her makeup table remains untouched, her clothes remain in her dresser and closet - her presence is everywhere in our home. I traded in our cars for something new (that has been fun), but generally I’m operating on auto-pilot and going through the motions and routines of the day: wake up, shower, get dressed, get the kids up/dressed/to daycare, work, pick up the kids from daycare, figure out dinner, feed the kids, get the kids ready for bed, put the kids to bed, attempt to relax, attempt to sleep, wake up, and repeat. I don't know anything different. I’ve come to realize during dinner how lonely grief is, or during days like today where work and dealing with people is difficult. I want to ask Lindsay about her day and tell her about mine. I want someone I can discuss and ponder life decisions with. I want to vent but know everything will be okay since I’m living my best life with my best friend.

On top of it all, I was notified last month that Lindsay had finished the Recompose process and her soil was delivered to me last week. The anxiety of that delivery and moment stirred up a lot of emotion. There was a comfort in knowing Lindsay was home with me but also a sadness in knowing the process was complete.

Bells Mountain Conservation Forest - Lindsay's soil will be used to nourish a group Red Alders

I’ve shared with some the struggles I experienced on Father’s Day. It was one of the hardest days I’ve had since Lindsay died because it felt like a reminder that Lindsay is gone instead of a celebration of being a father. We were never big about celebrating Hallmark holidays, but there was still an appreciation for each other and this year the day was just like any other Sunday. I’ve only known my adult life as a partner to Lindsay and I am the father I am because of Lindsay. Everything around me is a reminder of what Lindsay and I accomplished together and yet here I sit without her. On the one hand, I have a wonder and excitement for what’s next, but on the other hand, I’m paralyzed by the thought of letting go.

My intent here is not to be a downer, but I feel it's important to share my thoughts and emotions instead of continuing to hide behind a figurative stack of papers or computer screen. With that, I'll end on a positive - Arya and Ellis continue to impress me everyday and I could not imagine going through this without them. Seriously, it would be very easy to give up if I didn't have those two little gems to keep me excited for each new day.

Arya is the sweetest and most compassionate 4-year-old imaginable. She is witty, smart, and such a confident little lady - just like her mama. She constantly tells me how much she loves me and how she wants everyday to be Father's Day (which I've resisted because the real day was hard, but I can't ignore how loving this is). She's my kiddo and it's a joy to watch her personality grow.

Meanwhile, Ellis is the constant observer that wants to be just like his sister. He very much takes after me in how he evaluates, processes, and understands a situation before jumping in. He is mysteriously confident and has a sly humor far beyond his 2-years. He also loves to dance, but the mood has to be just right, and he's becoming quite the little athlete (no more real golf balls in the house). He's my little buddy and and I'm excited to continue watching him continue to grow into a little person.

I can never thank you all enough for the continued love and support. The shared thoughts and messages mean the world to me. I continue to be in awe each day of the impact Lindsay had on the world and the expanse of her web. I hope to continue that impact through my own actions and by raising our two littles that carry Lindsay with them everywhere they go.

Finally, a very special thanks to our St. Thomas School family for their naming of the new rooftop playfield in Lindsay's honor ("The Lindsay Larsen Playfield"). My heart is so touched by this gesture and I'm uplifted by all the fun and dancing kids will have under Lindsay's name.

Much love to you all!

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