There seems to be a proliferation of anniversaries and celebratory milestones of recent amongst those that I follow through the threads of the social media world. Which is awesome to witness. I honestly sit here in silent awe of these amazing moments, with a comment or two thrown in for good measure. But internally I wince and push down the rising reflux of jealousy and envy.
I ponder the milestones unmet. The anniversaries that would have transpired. I consider the present state of being compared to the imagined possibilities of a wanted and denied life. Obviously this leaves a bitter and painful flavour on my tongue.
Yet as I exhale I question myself:
Who am I to be envious of another, jealous of something I cannot experience? Who am I to bemoan another when in essence I have been given and have so much?
It is hard to watch others celebrate things as you would once have done. It is difficult to reconcile a life unplanned, undreamed, undesirable. It is frustrating to observe a fleeting nicety offered haphazardly to a simple yet profoundly important moment. It is hard to witness complacency.
Yet it is just as ridiculous to accept that I have it so much worse. Yes this is not my ideal. Yes I covet what I witness in others. Yes, and this is a big one, I have been treated unfairly, and in kind, this is a real and true feeling and I do not have to apologise or pretend this is bad or ungrateful of me to feel this way.
I also deeply appreciate all that I have, have had and have to opportunity to have. (tongue twister!😂) It would be remiss of me to wallow in any form of self pity, lest the honour of the present be lost to longing for a former life.
It’s hard this solo parenting, grief laced life. It’s something I would not wish upon anyone. Yet in such adverse conditions there are still sliver linings to be found.
I am alive. I have a roof over my head. I have money to live in a comfortable manner. I have two perfectly amazing children. There exists potential for a happy life.
I have lost my wife. Our dream. Our life. And through that I have gained perspective. Gratitude. Awareness and appreciation for the present.
So I may lament a life lost. I may burn flashes of green at observations. I may slip occasionally into woe.
But I know now that the grass is most definitely the greenest on the side of the fence you tend. And what I have, here and now, is all that I can tend.
There is no tomorrow yet, so I can only imagine it.
Yesterday is only how I remember it, and I can’t change it.
Now is what I make of it, therefore it is everything.
Therefore I choose to make my grass the greenest. ✌️
I was told a similar thing by someone, probably a counsellor. They said, appreciate the time you had together, rather than bemoan the time you’ve missed out on. It’s a bit simplistic, I know, and at certain times, you don’t want to hear it, but on the whole, it’s really helped me. Great work.
Absolutely – it is hard sometimes not to dwell on the time missed, but in the end, celebrating the time had not only helps with the healing process, but preserves the fondness and memories 🙂