Last night, we attended our monthly support group session. In addition to the usual discussions, there was an activity. Everyone drew a strip of paper out of a bag, and we were supposed to express how/what we felt about the word on our slip of paper. Some words were obvious ones for a grief support group: hopelessness, worry, angry. Others were somewhat unexpected: hopefulness, joy, happy. My word was also kind of unexpected: comfort.
If I had been at school, I probably would have been one of the first to go, simply because I don't like the dead air between the instructor asking a question and someone volunteering to answer. But I really couldn't think of anything "good" to say about comfort. There are few places, people, or things from which I draw comfort these days. There are some days, despite his best efforts, that even my husband can provide no comfort. Silly me, some days, I do just want to throw my own pity party.
I did come up with something to say. I said how difficult it is for me to comfort my husband. He does his best for me, but I often don't know what to say or do for him. Over the past several months, we've cried out our grief, together and alone. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that he's hurting just as much as I am, but I finally realized this weekend how hard it is to watch the one you love be in pain.
I was in a funk Saturday morning, and felt compelled to draw the sketch in my last post. Usually, getting those emotions out in some way helps (i.e. blogging), but not this time. Long story short, I had a meltdown Saturday evening, and there was nothing he could say to me that could provide comfort. Bless his heart, because he certainly tried. In his own grief and frustration, he punched the armoire and left the room. After calming myself down a bit, I went to check on him. I found him laid out on the floor, sobbing and asking God what we did to deserve this. The only thing I could do was get down on the floor and cry with him. Seeing him at his breaking point, I realized how much my own pain affects him, above and beyond his own pain. I knew, but I didn't know, not really. I'm not sure I know what to do about it, though. I mean, I encourage him to talk about whatever he's feeling. I hold him when he's crying but I'm not. And it never seems like I'm doing enough.
I guess it's because I'm carrying the guilt that his pain is my fault. If I'd been able to carry Morgan to term, neither of us would have to experience the pain of losing her. If I wasn't upset that Morgan was gone, he wouldn't be upset that I was upset. Vicious cycle, huh? (I know, logically, that what happened isn't my fault.)
I think I'll spend the next few weeks really thinking about this, and making an effort to be more comforting. He says that I do indeed provide comfort, but sometimes I'm not so sure. Our 6th anniversary is coming up next month, and we are more than certain our bond will stand the test of time. I didn't make any New Year's resolutions, but maybe I'll make a New Wife resolution, and this will be an area where I make a definite effort.