For Anyone Grieving, Slater Can Relate
For the first time since my wife Jorja passed away on Nov. 1, Marjo and I spoke about grief, delayed grief in particular.
I remember having a phone conversation about a week before Jorja died with my social worker from the Cancer Center, Sue Budz, about how I was feeling.
"Am I a sociopath"?, I asked her.
I could not believe that I was wishing for "this to be over". In a way, I was ready for Jorja to die. How could I be ready for my wife, my lover, my best friend, the mother of my children, to die?
For any of those who have watched a loved one battle cancer, especially near death, you know what I'm talking about. It's terrible.
Sue assured me that I was not a sociopath, and "sounded just like any other caregiver in my position". She also warned me about delayed grief, which is what is happening to me now.
Jorja's wake and burial has come and gone. Thanksgiving has come and gone. Christmas has come and gone.
It's now late January and Marjo and I have been back on the air for about a month and it feels as nice as it always did, but something is missing... My phone doesn't ding anymore with text messages from my wife, no more dinner plans, no more watching Ozark together.
As a now single widowed father of two young boys, I find myself thinking at night before I drift off to sleep, "what the hell happened?" You (we) battled this awful disease for three years, and the outcome is death? You're never coming back? What the F--- is that? What about our plans? What about watching our boys grow up? We didn't sign up for this.
In the year before Jorja passed, we made it a priority to prepare the boys for what was to come, "mommy's got to go to heaven."
Jorja and I also discussed her wishes for me and the rest of the family. She wanted to be remembered as she was... sweet, selfless, and a lover of life. She also wanted me to eventually "find love again".
2020 was a terrible year for most people, but for those who are grieving the loss of a loved one, I feel ya. Thanks for reading.
LOOK: Here are the best small towns to live in across America