Some days I don’t remember what normal even was.

I know I used to enjoy life. It takes an enormous amount of energy to enjoy life now.

One of the most difficult things about losing a spouse is trying to figure out what days are supposed to look like as a single parent. I have never been afraid to be alone, but alone with a small child, a house, 2 dogs, a cat, and everything that comes along with all of that is stressful. I remind myself constantly that there is no rule book or schedule for any of this. I try to keep to our routines so that Quinn can have as much normal as I can give her right now.

Some days I fall short. Today I felt like I did, but maybe I didn’t? She said this was the best day ever and all we really did was watch movies, read books, and make dinner together.

Depression and anxiety compounded with grief is hard. It makes everything seem so much harder than it has to be, from socializing to doing simple things like housework. Everything feels overwhelming. Everything feels like it’s too much. I want to be surrounded by people because I’m scared of what I’ll feel if I’m not, but I also want to be left alone because life can get too peopley for me really quickly and I shut down.

I find myself constantly wanting to run away from every bad feeling and unfortunately that’s not how any of this works. I have to allow myself to feel the grief completely or it just sneaks up on me and comes out when I least expect it anyway. There is no way around it. Only through it.

Normal for us used to be comfortable. Normal was a happy home. Normal was a house full of laughter and people and love. Normal was stability and comfort.

I think the loss of stability and comfort scares me the most. I miss that feeling.

I wish I knew what was next. I wish I could just see the other side, because I think if I could I would feel better about everything instead of walking around with a heavy sense of dread all the time. Anxiety takes over and I don’t sleep.

I’m terrified to lose people close to me. I’m scared of losing any more friends than the ones who have already faded into the background of our lives now that Matt is gone. I’m scared to lose the people I confide in. I’m scared to lose family members, even though I know that is inevitable. I need everything to just hold steady for a while.

I’m trying to remember who I was before the world got its hands on me. I’m trying to get back to normal, whatever that is going to be from now on.

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