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A woman grieving for her husband speaks about the deep exhaustion and blackness she feels, and how she needs to be strong, but wonders if she can do it.
At times I feel that I am just play-acting. It’s so tough keeping up the pretence at times. Trying to be strong, playing the role of a competent worker at office, a competent mother for my baby, a competent manager/organizer at home who remembers to buy rice, pulses, milk, oil, soap, just before they run out.
I so want to lay down my mask for once, and say that I want to give up. Let me give up and rest for a few hours. But life keeps pushing, prodding, like that sweet, innocent, little person who pokes my eyes and slaps my cheeks at 5.30 in the morning because he wants to play.
Strong. How heavy this word feels at times. The burden of carrying it! Would it have been easy if I had curled up in my bed and kept crying? Would it have been easy if I had chosen to be weak and stayed at home with my parents after my husband passed away? Would it have been easy if I had given up on my baby and asked my in laws to take him?
Life might have been easy! But would it have been LIFE? Would it have been LIVING?
Yes, I am tired. I am tired, tired, tired. It is just three months since he has gone. It is just one month since I moved to a new city and started working. I go home from office, take my baby in my arms, feed him and make him sleep, and I am exhausted. I am grateful for his nanny for taking such good care of him. But boy, am I tired! It’s not the physical fatigue, it’s the mental weariness that is killing me. Taking decisions, planning, worrying about future, living,… it is completely draining me of my energy.
Every day I wish I didnt have to go to office, and every day I still wake up and put on my make-up and a beautiful dress, just like a warrior putting on war paint and armour, and am ready to fight life. I know I am strong but I feel exhausted at times. Will it be really bad if I put down my weapons for once, forget my situation and laugh loudly with friends? When was the last time I had really laughed?
I meet friends and I tell them strictly not to talk about my situation, not to show pity, because I don’t want to cry or become weak. My tears come unheeded anyway, so why give them an extra invitation? They will come when they want to, but I won’t call them.
I read books, I listen to good peppy music, I call my friends. I am teaching my son’s nanny to read and write. I am trying to learn the local language. I am trying, I am trying to be busy, trying to stay active. But there are times when I ask myself – am I just making a fool of myself? Wearing a red dress or putting on red lipstick won’t make me strong. Strength needs to come from within; do I have it in me? Will I be able to make it happen?
Yes, I will. I take a deep breath and I start again. I give vent to all I feel, not through tears or screams. I don’t wail, I don’t cry, but instead I write. I write my heart out and then I smile and look up. Come life! Let’s fight now!
Published here earlier.
Image source: pixabay
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