‘Late to work, I left my dogs behind with full bladders. I spilled my coffee. On my shirt. Three times. My ‘great day’ lasted until the sun came up.’: Widow says ‘survival looks good on you, kid’

“I had one of those mornings. You know, the kind where you wake up on time. Everything is going well. Coffee is brewing, you’re having a great hair day, lunch is packed. You’re almost skipping through the house humming a tune waiting for the forest animals to appear.

You wake up your teenager who asks you for a hug and tells you she loves you. You remind her to check her alarm, which she does, only to find out that somehow in the middle of the night she’s broken the charger inside her phone and her phone is dead.

‘It’s okay,’ you whisper to yourself. ‘It’s just a charger.’ Never mind that you’ve already bought three chargers in six months or that she knew exactly how to take the broken piece out of the phone with nail clippers—almost like she’s done it before.

But, still. I’m fine. Right? It’s a great day.

It wasn’t long until I remembered I had to let the dogs out since they were banned from using the doggy door for a few days. I guess letting them have free reign of the yard while concrete was being laid was a bad idea. I thought the paw prints were cute but not everybody agreed. Anyway, no big deal. What’s a walk or two—or ten—every day to make sure the dogs are comfortable and my floors stay soiled free?

It’s a great day.

Except it’s dark out still. And cold. And the grass is wet. And apparently, my dogs are spoiled. So, when a slight tug at the leash wasn’t going to get them to budge from the deck to grass, I tugged a little harder which, of course, just meant that they sat back on their weight making it impossible to move. And now I’m late. And if I didn’t mention before, it was dark and it was cold. Carrying them became the only option, but as soon as I put them down, back they ran to the door, which meant I was headed to work leaving three dogs behind with full bladders.

But, still. I’m fine. Right? It’s a great day.

Never mind that I spilled my coffee on my way to work. On my shirt. Three times.

Never mind that I’m really, really tired.

Never mind that my kid probably fell back to sleep and my dogs are probably scratching at the back door.

Never mind that my ‘great day’ only lasted until the sun came up.

Because despite all of it, I am surviving. And that’s not something I thought I knew how to do. You know what they say, ‘When you plan your spouse’s funeral you can pretty much do anything.’ I think whoever wrote that meant the big stuff, but I also think it includes waking up the kid and walking the dog because sometimes those are the biggest, most tiring things of them all.

I don’t think I tell myself often enough that I am proud of me. Maybe because I feel like it’s just expected that I would go on and keep doing the things I’m supposed to do, just like any widow or widower would do. I mean, you just do because ‘not doing’ isn’t really an option.

But even so, I don’t think we remind each other that we’re proud just for making it through the day. Or that we’re doing a good job, even when everything is going wrong. Or that we’re going to be okay, even when it doesn’t feel like it.

So, please hear me on this and hear me loud.

Survival looks good on you, kid. And, it looks good on me. I am going to keep reminding myself of that. I hope you do, too.”

Courtesy of Diana Register

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Diana Register of Meridian, Idaho. Her books “Grief Life” and “Grief & Glitter” are available in print and on kindle. You can find more of her books here, and her podcast here. Connect with Diana on her author Facebook page, and Instagram.

Read more from Diana:

‘After a 9-hour drive home she asked, ‘Can we stop at the cemetery?’ There was no question, no hesitation. ‘Of course,’ he said.’: Bonus dad shares act of kindness for grieving daughter

‘My 15-year-old asked, ‘Mom, can I get a tattoo?’ I let her and no, I don’t care what anybody has to say about it.’: Mom says daughter ‘earned’ tattoo, ‘She showed me what surviving looks like’

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