When Male first died, I wanted time to pass really quickly. I wanted it to be ten years later, so that the griefhole in my chest would stop trying to suck me through it; so that I could listen to music again without crying uncontrollably and stop smelling his shirts.
Now that it’s been six months, I want time to slow down. I’m not ready for it to be six months later. In another six months, it will be a year and people will expect me to do things without him. People will start saying, “It’s been a year; you need to move on.” I live in fear of someone telling me to move on, partly because I’m not ready, and partly because I think I’ll stab the first person who tells me that.
I want the safety of having only survived one week, one month without him. Nobody bothers you for anything a month after the love of your life, the person you spent fifteen ridiculous years circling the relationship question with, up and dies on you. Nobody tells you to move on after one month.
Nobody has told me that at six months either, but I can see it coming. I can practically see the date circled on my mom’s calendar. Six months from now, she’ll start nagging me to get married again, like she did from the time I was of marriageable age until she gave up on Male and I ever tying the knot about ten years ago. Six months from now, she’ll try setting me up with her friends’ boring and nothing in common with sons like she did before Male and I met.
It needs to stay 2015, the year he died, forever. I can’t handle anniversaries of his death. I’m not ready for a year, but it will be here in the blink of an eye. I’m not even ready for six months, but it’s here. There are certain words that still send me into mini grief fits. There are songs I still can’t listen to. There are movies I can’t watch and books I can’t read. There are stories I can’t write.
Time passes so strangely during grief; fast and slow at the same time and everything else just fades away. 6 days, 6 weeks, 6 months… only the age of children and tragedies are measured in such small increments.
The other day, I ran out of deodorant and went to use his. It was dried up. I started crying. He left me dried up deodorant, and in typical Male fashion, a razor handle for one type of razors and an unopened box of razor refills for another type of razor.
I used all the refills I had for the razor he left, so I went to the store and bought a handle for the unopened box. I bought a razor, deodorant, hand sanitizer and something else I don’t remember now. When I laid all my purchases on the counter, being a graphic designer whose job is mostly color, I noticed aloud, “Everything I’m buying is blue.” The cashier looked at me, looked at my purchases, gave me a strange look and rang up my purchases.
He probably thought that there was someone with stubble waiting at home for that razor. It hurt that he didn’t know the truth. I wanted to scream that I’m buying a razor to fit the cartridges that my dead boyfriend left me, because I can’t just get rid of them. I have to use them, because it’s all I have left. Everything I’m buying is blue!
Maybe when I’ve used up all the razors he left, I’ll be ready to move on. Maybe the tears will have dried up like his deodorant. Maybe then, I can move on. All I know is, today, I’m glad that there are thirty of them in that box.