We finally started the process of sorting through our things. It’s a lot more difficult than we thought, so I’m glad that we’re getting started now. I’d rather stretch the emotions out over a two-month period than go through every emotion possible in a two-day period.
The other day while getting clothes together for a Goodwill run, we ran across the dress shirt that Blake wore to preach his first funeral. It doesn’t fit him anymore and after staring at it for a while, he asked me to get rid of it while he wasn’t looking. After he left to run an errand, I gently tucked it among the other clothes slated for give-away—mentally noting where I’d left it.
A little while later, he asked me where I’d put it and if it was okay for him to keep it. I told him that I’d had a hard time putting it in the Goodwill bag, as well, and that it was more than okay for him to hold onto it. We talked about how silly it was to keep a shirt when we both have so many other memories of our dear friend, but we still can’t make ourselves give it away.
Jeremey was only twenty-three when he lost his life in a motorcycle accident. It’s been two years since we laid him to rest. Sometimes it seems like it’s been forever since we’ve heard his light-hearted laugh, and other days it seems like he was just here. Either way, the wound still cuts us deep. He was an incredible friend, brother and role-model.
This past weekend we packed up our sweet dog, Snickers, and took her to live with Blake’s family. I never imagined it would be so hard to leave her behind. We’ll see her plenty of times before we leave, but something about coming home without her broke our hearts. Neither one of us mentioned the obvious and I think it was because mentioning it would have opened up an even bigger flood of emotions.
We got Snickers less than a month after Jeremey’s death. Within days of his funeral, we knew we had to do something to help ourselves cope with the loss. Honestly, we seriously considered having a baby. There is just something about a sudden death makes you crave new life, regardless of how much sense it makes. We had only been married six months, Blake had just started school and my job didn’t pay nearly enough for the two of us to scrape by. Our lives and our money were stretched so thin, and I’m grateful that God led us to make the right decision for us at that time.
Snickers drove me crazy, but she did her job well. Her whining and puppy yaps forced us out of bed each morning, whether we wanted get up or not. Her need for walks forced us out of the apartment on days when we just wanted to stay inside and keep the curtains closed. Her sandpaper tongue licked away our salty tears on many occasions. I’m glad she got to be a part of our lives, and a part of our healing.