This week, I’ll reach the one year mark of when Tim and I went into the hospital. I returned home that same night on Dec. 16, 2021. Tim never returned home, passing away on Jan. 5, 2022.
Every day, I’ve tried to figure out how to get through this world without Tim, and every day, I’m reminded of how thankful I am for all of you, near and far. You stood by me when we got sick, dropping food off, checking in and offering prayers and comfort.
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You sent me all the love in the world when I pieced together Tim’s obituary, then couldn’t piece together a sentence for weeks on end. You rejoiced with me when Tim sent me a cat the day after he passed. That little black cat, found by my friend Maura near her home by the lighthouse, has been my saving grace this year. She’s also kept us all entertained with her shenanigans. I named her Charley after Tim’s middle name, Charles.
You helped me figure out how to travel to California to see our daughter Marissa, when I hadn’t traveled anywhere outside of Michigan for 42 years, certainly not in an airplane. You got me through that trip with such confidence that I did it again in November.
You showed up for Tim’s memorial in July, radiating love to me and the kids at Bowers Harbor Park that day. I know Tim was there, especially when I made you all listen to his favorite Jimi Hendrix version of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
You invited me out for meals, coffee, hikes and movies, getting me out of the house when I needed it most. You had me over to your house when you knew I needed to be around people, and you didn’t complain when I invited myself over.
You kept the Gazette going with your donations, through stretches of time when I couldn’t piece two words together and my email newsletters were sporadic. Charley is a good managing editor, but her propensity for naps isn’t helpful when I’ve got deadlines.
Throughout this year of change, you sent me cards and texts and called to see how I was doing. You offered words of encouragement at community events, township meetings, in the checkout line at Family Fare, at Haserot Beach and on the Lighthouse Trail.
You reminded me that it’s ok to give yourself grace during the hard times, and to lean on others when you’re grieving for what used to be while trying to find a path forward.
Words cannot describe how much you all mean to me, but I hope this little love letter expresses how grateful I am that you’re in my life. Thank you for being there.