Diary of a Widower

Daily entries by a husband, who stayed behind with his two sons

Beware of unstoppable widower

MONDAY, March 22 – And then I decided I’d had enough… and I really got going. The morning began with a quick trip to school to drop Eamonn off, followed by a short but intense session at the gym. I showered and then there was no stopping me.

Made an appointment with the accountant, called to order an extra kitchen cabinet, phoned the crematorium Westgaarde.  Next Tuesday at ten o’clock I’m going to pick up the urn with Jennifer’s ashes. After that a phone call to Route Mobiel and within a half-hour the yellow Mini Cooper was on the road and I could see myself in the rear-view mirror heading for Hilversum.

That glance hit me in the pit of my stomach. Before driving off, I’d had to adjust the mirrors and move the seat back. Another piece of Jennifer deleted from our life. The car – her car – adapted itself to my body and was now mine and not hers.

I pretended, somewhat naively, that she was there with me as I drove to work, taking back-roads through fields and woods. Especially, when I spotted lambs frolicking in the fields, I could hear her cooing with pleasure, the way she always did when she caught sight of them. She couldn’t help calling out to the animals and she was never happier than at this time of the year, the season of fresh, young, innocent animals.

But that didn’t alter the fact that at the end of the day I had a moment of panic. The Mini refused to start. Something with the battery. There were more than enough colleagues available to help jumpstart the car. Soon I was heading home, where Sander and Eamonn were sitting there together, waiting. It was a kind of test – which they passed with flying colors. Wonderful to see them accept responsibility.

It was a great day and they can’t take that away from me.

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