My head is spinning from the whirlwind that has been my life since the 4th of July. We still have about a dozen boxes to unpack in our new home, plus need to hang pictures and decorate. There will be more updating to the house as well, but at least the major fixes are done for a few years.
In the mean time, I find myself experiencing the stages of grief over losing my mother-in-law three weeks ago.
After our remodel and move, my husband was finally able to travel the 1,100 miles to her home. Unfortunately, his mom had already left this plain.
I mentioned in her tribute post, she didn’t like to throw anything away. I wouldn’t quite call her a hoarder, because at least there was room to move around in her home, but she came pretty darn close.
My husband put himself to the task of going through her office. He found letters that she had written in the computer to us, printed them out, put them in an envelope and stamped but never mailed. When I say letters, I mean multiples of the same letter. She’d go back in and put a new date on the letter, reprint it out and stamp it again, several times in a row! I can’t say that I’m surprised, because this was so like her. And, by the way, they were letters we eventually received, so it wasn’t like finding a hidden treasure that we never got to see.
Then there were these papers you see below.
This doesn’t even make up a crumb of the things that will need to be removed from her house.
I suppose I shouldn’t be one to talk, having confessed to not being able to let go of my keepsakes on this very blog. In comparison, mine are neatly stored and organized. She also has a lot of other unnecessary items that are not keepsakes. One time when she moved, she kept boxes of wire ties to move with her.
Grieving is a deeply personal thing to go through. I’m an open person, yet I’m only comfortable sharing a small portion of my present grief publicly, especially since I feel guilty. I know that anger is one of the five stages, and this is the one that’s hitting me the most right now.
I’ve never been able to hide or suppress my true feelings. It was one of the issues between us. I didn’t know how to be fake, and she could cover up so well. I expected directness, and she danced around her points like a puppy circling her spot but never quite settling in.
Over the years, we had adapted into our own way of communicating. It was good between us when she left. So, I’m confused about the anger. I suppose these emotions will fade over time. Her memorial is in ten days, as her remains were sent up north to be with her husband’s.
Have you ever been taken by surprise by an emotion you didn’t expect?