It’s 8am on a Saturday morning. He should be in my kitchen, drinking coffee at his laptop. This is around the time I would walk out of my bedroom. He should be jumping up, giving me a smile and a kiss, and pouring my coffee. He should be two hours into his day, having woken up at 6am and slipped out of the room, letting me sleep a little longer.
But he’s not here.
Of course, many of us have had these thoughts when a relationship ends. We miss the simple daily routine. We may know we are better off, we may have been the one to end things, but those thoughts take a while to leave us.
Now, I get to explore those thoughts knowing he’d be here if he could. We didn’t choose to end our relationship. He crashed his motorcycle on his way to my house. He never made it.
There are aspects of this that are similar to a break up. I found this with a quick Google search:
One type of loss that all of us eventually experience is the loss of a romantic relationship that was very important to us. When we go through that experience, we go through those same stages of grief that we would go through if someone close to us had died.
Kathryn Vercillo The Five Stages of Grief
I don’t believe in the five stages of grief. It’s too clean cut and neat. Which stage is the lying in bed at 8am, thinking about what he’d be doing if he were here, knowing that here is where he wants to be and where he should be but can’t? Which stage is feeling a grief wave approach and choosing between letting it overtake me or taking a deep breath and repeating my mantra, “acceptance and surrender?”
Breaking up sucks. I’ve walked away from lovers I care deeply about but can’t stay in relationship with. It hurts and it takes time. And while there are similarities, there’s no comparing a lover leaving because one of you chose to walk away, and knowing your lover would be in your kitchen waiting to greet you if he were alive. The scary thing is knowing this will happen to many of us. Everyone in long term relationships will one day either die, leaving their partner to grieve them, or be left to grieve their partner. The 50% that are left to live without them will wake up knowing where their lover would be if they were alive, perhaps wishing it were so.
The scary reality of life is the lack of forever.
Deep breath. Exhale acceptance and surrender.