Today I rediscovered who I was before David. I found myself thinking of myself differently. I can't really explain it, but at the end of the day I realized I had been moving in the world in a different way, like I used to when it was just me.
I dug up three garden beds and planted three rows of potatoes, nine broccoli plants, carrots and more lettuce. I weeded the garlic and onions that I planted in the fall. Maybe tomorrow I will plant the peas and dig the tomato bed. It felt good to be doing hard work, even if I was crying while I did it. David took such care of me, he always did the hard work of digging while I came behind and planted. We shared a love of gardening, although I think he tolerated my enthusiasm for self sustainability. He'd grown up that way and didn't always see the need to go back there. I remember at the begining I used to tell him, "I don't need you, I'm fine by myself." He would always smile and say, "I know." I held on to that so carefully for a couple of years and then slowly I came to rely on him, to be part of a team. That is one of the hardest thing to lose now. Being part of a team, working together, planning, sharing.
I spent part of the evening with Peggy and Micheal and their daughter and four grandchildren. Busy and noisy, but very fun. Driving home I realized that I had been relating to the kids differently than I did when David was with me. I was more like I am with my students, somehow different, even though with David I was also still me. It's so odd, to see myself as someone alone and someone with David. I never really felt like I got the hang of it, sharing my life with someone else. I was still working out how to be me and be us. One of the things that makes me sad is that I was finally, this last year or so, getting into the groove of it. I had made the switch from "me and you" to "us."
So, now I relearn who I am alone. Like everything else in this process, it is a mixed bag. Exciting in some ways and so very sad.