Monday, September 14, 2009

Bits 'n Pieces 'n Back to Work

Upon cleaning out Mom's house this summer, I came across the ring my father wore when he was in the Navy. It comforted me somehow, and with Mom AND Teri's permission, I took custody of it, and put it on a chain. It made me feel better, and I wore it while simultaneously yammering to my father as I took charge of Mom's house. Having primary control of what went, what stayed, and what was locked into a safe, I arrived home many days to sit down and ask aloud, "OK, Dad? Did I do ok?"

Crazy or not, it got me through. I took it off when I was doing ok, and then put that thing back on when I was feeling shaky.

I wore it last Wednesday and Thursday, to Teri's visitation and funeral.

Over 400 people signed the guestbook on Wednesday evening. 100 or so people attended the funeral on Thursday. I hugged almost all of those people, multiply and fiercely.

Friday I found myself with a bruise on my breastbone, where that ring had been pressed into my torso 1000 times or so over the course of the last few days.

My father, my sister, a sweet, sweet, bittersweet bruise over my heart. I keep touching that bruise to see if it still hurts. I don't want it to go away; I'd wear the bruise over the ring forever, if I could.


Today was a tough day: we headed back to work today.

The 4th day after her funeral, we snapped to attention and returned to our routine.

It knocked me off my ass. Would I not die when she did? Could I ever tell my mother? The visitation, how could I ever live through that? The funeral, would I survive?

Lord Have Mercy, I hadn't anticipated "moving on."

The alarm went off this morning, and it was "Here we go: Life without Teri." It seemed terribly too soon, and I knew for a fact that whatever I was feeling, her husband was feeling ten-fold as he prepared for work this morning. I texted him: "U holding up?" He sent me back an OK, then another, checking on me.

"Yeah, kinda hard to return to routine...feels weird, wrong."

He responded "Yep."

At days end, we spoke and agreed: We'd both have preferred to have had more time to remain..."reverent." It seems too soon, and disrespectful to "move on."

Ah, but we have house payments, and none of us own money trees, and we are thus thrust back into the rat race with our heads still spinning that we can't call Teri on our lunch hour.

We all continue to hold one another up.

It is where we are, on Monday following.


  1. Yes, going back to the "day to day" must feel really weird, but I imagine Teri would want that. I love your tale of the ring. That's very deep. Good luck to all of you in this terrible time.

  2. Yeah, going back somehow makes it real....thinking of you...

  3. All you can do is hold each other up...

  4. Well, again my condolences. As long as you remember, they still live in your thoughts. Also remember, don't feel bad you're here and they are gone- Life is for the living, and life must go on.

  5. Anonymous9:10 AM

    Its been four years since my sister passed and I don't think of it as moving on. The ones we love are always in our hearts and on our minds. We are just moving forward. --jody

  6. We don't grieve well in this society. We're all supposed to snap to attention and get back to work, as if it's all okay now because the services are over. Boo on that (edited for content).

  7. Here's another big hug from Texas to freshen up that bruise.

  8. And another hug from Oregon to further extend the bruise that Texas just freshened up for you. The farther west you go, I hear, the longer they last. Do you know anyone in Hawaii? Or Tahiti? How about Fiji?
    I've been been dreading the "day after" for you. It seems so wrong for everyone and everything just to carry on as normal, but it's not. You worry about irreverence and disrespect, but from the stories I've heard of Teri and her hilarious, irreverent sense of humor, she'd have something witty and cutting to say to both you and Tim about this, wouldn't she? What would it be, Lori?

  9. I have been on hiatus due to vacation + illness, so I am just catching up...and I am so so sorry.

    I always wished I had magical words to say at times like this. Some people can say the most comforting things without a thought. I don't think I am one of them.

    But know that you have hundreds if not thousands of people thinking of you, praying for you and sending good and positive energy your direction - life sustaining energy. I am merely one of them.

  10. Anonymous2:26 PM

    That ring-chain is beautiful..and I had goosebumps imagining that bitter sweet bruise reminding you of your dad and sister.Small things with a BIG impact.

    May you have all the strength to cope with hard days getting back to grind..and may calm and peace follow back soon into your heart and mind Lori.


  11. Hated hearing this news. Unfortunately, knowing in advance doesn't lessen the pain or make it any easier. Love the story about your Dad's ring. Glad you found some comfort there. Peace to you and your family.

  12. And another from NYC,no need to move west, althogh Tahiti..hmm. It is a comfort to have something small that is such a big comfort, I'm glad you have it as you move forward..
    and as BD says ..Live. positive thoughts on my mind for you and your family.


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