Opinion: Widows Circle year two
The new year has progressed to the point where my resolutions are still waiting to be fulfilled.
Fred has been dead a year on Tuesday. I’m not a fan of polite euphemisms such as passed away, gone to glory, or any of the dozens of other ways to state the obvious.
My husband of 48 years is dead. He is gone and not coming back.
Frankly, I am really tired of being a member of what I disdainfully refer to as my Widows Circle. The only good thing about it is the support of the other men and women who have lost their spouses.
Hands down, this has been the worst year of my life. I’m hoping this next one will be better.
Not being parents, Fred and I have had the pleasure of spending our money on ourselves instead of on bicycles, braces and college funds.
Consequently, we have accumulated a lot of stuff that I now have to deal with. I have a mini-storage half-full of excess possessions I need to get rid of.
The storage unit is only half full because the other half once served as a garage for Fred’s Dodge pick-up truck.
With the help of my dear cousin, Rick Dorris, I was able to get it smogged, relicensed, and sold.
When we sold my in-law’s five-acre ranch in Dixieland, we bought a home in Parkwood. The reason for that neighborhood is its proximity to Madera Irrigation District, Fred’s employer for 27 years. After MID he worked for the Madera County Resource Management Agency, fulfilling a five-year employment with a pension that includes medical coverage.
I am very grateful Fred put a lot of thought and effort into providing for me after his demise. He always thought ahead. When he died, for the first time in my life, I had no adult supervision. I went from my mother’s home to one with Fred without ever living on my own.
When Fred died, I chose not to have a funeral service of any kind. Like most people, Fred hated going to funerals. In all our years together, he may have attended a half dozen or so, four of those being our parents.
It was easier for me not to have a service of any kind. It upset some people who suggested I have a service on the anniversary of his death.
We gave Fred a lovely obituary in the Tribune, and my colleagues created a tribute to the two of us featuring the last photo we had taken.
Sitting with him in the slumber room at Jay Chapel and seeing the Tribune coverage were about all I could handle. I know I cheated his friends of the opportunity to say goodbye, but at the time, it was the best I could manage.
As time goes on, I handle being without him like a 12-step program: one day at a time.
I hope to see you again one day, Fred. I have no idea what waits after this life ends.
All I can do is try and live the rest of my life in a way that honors his memory.
Long days and pleasant nights, have a blessed weekend.
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Readers may contact Tami Jo Nix by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or following @TamiJoNix on Twitter.