I’m completely devastated today. There was a horrible mixup while I was out of town last week and I discovered that the dress for my portrait series has been lost forever. It is just a dress – but it is so much more. I have been through some of the most intimate and vulnerable moments of my life wearing this dress. We had, in some way, become woven into each other over time. The final shot of the series was actually going to be just the dress itself, on the ground – dirty, torn and tattered from our year-long journey together through this rough terrain. It was to signify my stepping out of this phase of my journey. Of leaving some of the pain behind. Now… everything is up in the air.
The irony here is not lost on me. I have just lost my most important prop in a project all about losing my most important person. Right as this journey was gaining a beautiful momentum – without warning, without my having any say in the matter. Gone. World uprooted. Now what will you do? It is all too familiar a story.
I know somehow, losing this most important piece will come to mean something very deep. I know it will take things somewhere new… somewhere it would not have otherwise gone. Which is – I suppose – entirely appropriate for a series about death. This is what death does to our lives… it pulls the rug out from under us – forces us to re-evaluate everything. Helps us to make changes and reminds us what’s important. Brings in new perspective and focus. Despite my realizing all of this deeper meaning – I still hate it. I still want desperately to have this dress back. And the love of my life back. And our future together back. And thus, it has been a long, rainy afternoon of dramatic arm-failing, tears, and curse words. A lot of curse words. Oh – and you can bet I will bury my face in a tub of ice cream tonight. And I won’t even feel slightly bad over it.
I will make this work somehow… just as I’ve continued to make this life work since he died. So I know, I will figure it out. But just like my life without him – things going forward will be different now. It will still be beautiful, and meaningful, but it will not be what it was going to be. It is one of the most painful parts of living with loss. Seriously. I’m so over loss.
I can’t promise I’ll get an image up this week. Or even next week. I don’t really know what will happen from here. But I will at least keep writing in the interim. For anyone else out there having a crap day – grab a spoon. We’ll bury our feelings in a tub-o-mint chocolate chip together. Here’s hoping that tomorrow brings some new promise.