A brief respite before the next storm arrives. Grey, cold and very muddy. Soon to be grey, cold, very muddy, very wet and stormy. It’s been one of those winters. Constantly just trying to avoid deep muddy puddles. Today I failed. My old running shoes have hardly any tread left on them. As I tried to sidestep a large puddle my foot slipped and I ended up standing in 4 inches of dirty water. Lovely. I really should buy a good pair of trail shoes but money is a little tight. Expenditure is prioritised. They will have to wait their turn.

If you we’re like me then you tried not to think about death and grief. I knew it would strike at some stage (that’s life) but best not think about it too much. I could understand the emotions as I had experienced losing my Dad when I was quite young. But I was shielded from much of the fallout. I really didn’t have the faintest idea about the practicalities. Years passed and I avoided thinking about death again. Then my mum died. This time no shield. Suddenly I was grieving again but this time I was also dealing with practicalities. So when my partner then died 6 weeks later. I was doubling up on the emotions and doubling up on the practicalities.

That is what’s tough about losing someone so close to you. At your lowest emotional point you are saddled with practicalities. You can’t think but you are trying to organise

  • Registering the death
  • Informing people
  • Organising a funeral
  • Sorting out your job
  • Sorting out your partners job. Returning work assets and documents.
  • Trying to work out finances
  • Trying to find the will and wade your way through probate
  • Dealing with Government Departments, Banks, Utility Companies
  • Trying to change the deeds to the house
  • Going through personal items and enduring countless trips to charity shops
  • Trying to change car ownership so I can sell her car
  • Sorting out what to do with the ashes

Your not even warned that the ashes come back in a glorified giant sweet jar. I wasn’t expecting an Egyptian Sarcophagus but I certainly wasn’t expecting a sweet jar shaped thing.

Like grief the practicalities tend to stick with you. As we were not married probate was brutal and took 15 months to finally bottom out. I didn’t expect that. I never considered that my career would have to be ditched quickly as it became incompatible with the now number one priority – single parenting. Suddenly two steady incomes dropped to one zero based hours contract income. Where did that practicality come from. I should have realised really. The sudden loss of someone your intrinsically linked with is going to send seismic waves through the very foundations of your life. Stuff will fall down. Things will change. Seismic waves – guess whose been trying to help son with Wave Theory for school.

So here we are in 2020 and I’m still dealing with grief. Still dealing with practicalities. I have managed to kinda stabilise the new post death financial world. But things are tight. Very tight. Again something I would never have immediately associated with losing someone close to you. But it is what it is. You prioritise the essential stuff. Unfortunately brand shiny mud loving trail shoes are not essential. So I guess it won’t be the last muddy puddle I end up standing in.

I guess I can forgive myself for not seeing that particular connection. Grief and muddy puddles.

83 thoughts on “Grief and muddy puddles

  1. I don’t think it’s something that one could prepare for you. My heart absolutely breaks for you, and as I read your post I found myself internally putting up walls so as to not imagine myself in your shoes. Which is ironic to say the least. I hope you have found some help: both practically and emotionally. I love this article for it’s internal look into what someone endures when suffering such massive loss.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. The practicality party resonated with me-especially relating to the recording of ashes. We were given part of my wife’s grandmother’s ashes and told to take them on our planned summer holiday last month, as a tribute to the departeds live of travel. That was cancelled when the place we had booked burnt to the ground in the mega-fire here in Australia.

    Something about scattering ashes in as place reduced to ashes itself may be dramatic irony, but it’s a weird aspect of grief that becomes almost a chore, and now certainly a stressor

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve seen people post pictures where the ashes in a checked bag were slashed open and left to scatter in the person’s clothing. It seems more trouble than its worth to even try, as awful as it sounds

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m trying to handle as many practicalities now as I can. I dont want my daughters to have that load.
    Muddy puddles are everywhere on our journey aren’t they? It seems like there are more of them when our shoes have holes.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. It’s something I believe we do not want to think about or life just begins with someone and you really do not think of what if the buts. We live. We think or want to believe we are invincible even when we lost others before. I guess it’s a shield our mind goes into to block it out. And yes it’s like a muddy puddle perfect description my friend. Hugs to you and thinking of you💕

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I really empathize with this post. It’s incredible how much stuff I’m still dealing with a year later. And now I’m looking for a second job. Cheer up about the mud; I would have fallen in it. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I guess it depends. A few ads to the side or at the bottom wouldn’t bother me, but if it was flooded I might be turned off. I don’t know how much control you’d have over layout and number of ads. Something to consider though maybe..

        Liked by 1 person

  6. You do get a ton of traffic – might be worthwhile to monetize. I was thinking about trail shoes too. The ones I have have such a huge cushiony heel that I was worried about an ankle turn cause it’s a long way down. Some other time, you’re right, when the money is right (gets better). I liked your analogy too. Thinking of you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This post touched me. I have not experienced much loss in my life but do think often (perhaps more often than I should) of what it would be like if those close to me died. As one ages, it is inevitable: we are mortal beings. But that does not lessen the ache. Life is inherently meaningful, though–even if you are walking the path alone. Your courage to continue walking your path despite the losses you have faced is a beautiful thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This post touched me. I have clients who have dealt with loss, and I always remind them that there is no standard of how to cope everyone has their own journey. I also inform them to love themselves. I know money is tight, but your health and sanity is important, buy a good pair of trail shoes. I have learned as a runner the more outrageous the color/ design a shoe is the quicker they end up in the clearance section so start there….

    Liked by 2 people

      1. haha yesss my current ones are bright neon orange with a blue web patter. They retailed for $170 I found them in the men’s department for $49 and learned when I got to the counter the yellow tag meant a additional 15% off :). So, yes please embrace the fun shoe your dry feet will thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. You capture this feeling so well. Around this time each year I think about losing my mom, and my friend just lost her dad last week so she’s right in the thick of this. It helps to see someone else put the thoughts down.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Maybe an ebook about living through grief as a single parent ? It’s a way of earning money and you have so much to teach others who may need your help and advice 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It does. I’m always a bit cautious in choosing my words as to not sound too discontent. But sometimes the heart feels what the heart feels. And writing things down, even if it doesn’t make sense, it gives me relief.
        I apologize for just going back and catching up on your posts. I’ve been – selfishly, caught up in my own health, that I hadn’t had the energy to log on to WordPress.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I suppose it should be mine since I do it all with the children. 🥺 It continues to keep me on my toes. It’s homework, projects, school trips, or the school asking for money. These schools are constantly asking for money. If I get a part time job, I think it’ll all be for them! 😂

        Liked by 1 person

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