Grief Amnesia

June 7, 2017

This is my last post about the memory garden (until the next time I post about it). I love it so much! The mulch went down the other day and it is just beautiful. The plants are far from mature, but it doesn’t matter. It’s everything and so much more than I ever could have imagined. Every time I water or weed or just stare at it, I feel so happy.


A couple days ago I was admiring the garden’s beauty and out of nowhere, grief amnesia struck me again. It’s that fraction of a millisecond when joy overcomes me and I want to turn to Mark to share the moment with him. It is barely measurable by time as it happens so fast. Then just as quickly reality crashes upon me. The realization that he isn’t here and I am not allowed to share life’s beautiful moments with him. And just like that, joy is replaced by suffocating sorrow.

The moment occurred again at Gman’s baseball game last night. His team played so well. They were holding the undefeated team and really working together and having fun. Mark would’ve been so excited and proud! Why can’t the heart and the mind remember reality?! I’ll never stop thinking about my husband, remembering our life together…but I wish it were possible to cure grief amnesia. It is shocking and painful every time it happens. Oh, how I miss sharing life with him.

And not just the joyful moments – I really miss him in the difficult moments too. There was hail damage to dozens of roofs in the neighborhood. Everyone is having insurance replace their roofs…. except mine. Roofers say there is damage; my EGR insurance adjuster says nothing to see here. I don’t want to handle this. I don’t want to have to push back for what is right. I want Mark to protect me and handle all of this.

And yet, I’m doing it. I’m doing all the things I wish he were still here to do for us. And although I’m proving capable enough, it isn’t the same. I feel deserted and alone. I sometimes feel scared not sharing life with the man who took care of broken HVAC system issues (yep, that happened) and insurance adjusters. Not being able to share life’s joy with my best friend leaves my heart feeling beaten; the weight upon it asphyxiating.

My neighbor friends have been so wonderful filling this awkward void. It’s not their job at all, and yet they are doing it. I often over share with them because I just can’t keep it all inside. I need someone’s patient and listening ears to help me flesh out my anxieties, questions and fears. And I need people to share my joys with, too. They are such gracious troopers. I’m so grateful for their tolerance of me as I continue to try to figure out how to be the lone head of household. Thank you so much, J & B.

I may have written about grief amnesia before, because it’s certainly not a new thing. However, I wanted you to know it still occasionally rears its ugly, dark and scary head. Fourteen months into this and it still assaults me.

I’m going to make it though. Survival is what I always do. I just wish I were doing it with my husband by my side.

Extra grace to all my fellow grief amnesiacs out there. You aren’t alone.


I might have something really amazing or funny or profound to say one of these days. Don’t miss it! SUBSCRIBE HERE!

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  • Reply Patti June 7, 2017 at 10:48 am

    You’ve read my mind , my heart & soul! It’s been almost 20 months my beloved best friend & life soulmate has been gone! I’ve had to relocate to a new city without him! It’s been 40 years we’ve always moved together, this all seems so wrong but I have to push thru & move forward 😔

  • Reply Ruth June 7, 2017 at 10:52 am

    Beautiful, touching message! I always love reading your posts.

  • Reply Karen Underdahl June 7, 2017 at 10:56 am

    Oh Jodi, I wish I could give you a BIG hug. My thoughts and prayers are with you! The memory garden is so beautiful, it will be a peaceful retreat, Put a bench in there so you can sit, relax, ponder and remember all the beautiful memories of Mark. He will meet you there with our loving God! Love you! Karen

  • Reply Jaime Jackson June 7, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    I aprreciate you and your candid honesty. My husband died 4/2/16. You and I seem to be experiencing the same things and sometimes I feel as though you have written my exact thoughts! My children are 6 and 3. We all miss daddy so much! I was at my daughter’s softball game last and completely understand grief amnesia! I’m glad you have identified this terminology for me as I wasn’t sure how to express it! You are in my prayer! Please continue your writing! It’s nice to have someone who “gets me”! -Jaime

  • Reply Jamel Fuchs June 7, 2017 at 12:17 pm

    Jodi you are amazing and strong- and the garden is unbelievably beautiful!! We are the ones that are blessed to be your neighbors! We love you! Jamel

  • Reply Dorothy J Wright June 7, 2017 at 12:34 pm

    You post today described exactly what is happening to me, even down to the neighbors initials. I am into seven months without my husband of 53 years and it hurts every day, some more than others. Thanks for all of your posts.

    • Reply Gwen June 7, 2017 at 9:39 pm

      I’m so sorry….💕

  • Reply Gwen June 7, 2017 at 9:38 pm

    My husband of 23 years passed 14 months ago as well. We didn’t have children so now I’m alone with 1 sister pretty close by (thank you Jesus!) and my 40 hour a week co-workers. Your writing touches me to my core. We had some really tough years, but we truly loved each other and I sure do miss those good times. His arm around my waist as we fell asleep, hugs, laughter, eating together (I lost 10 #), my handy man, mechanic and most of all the partner that loved me…

    Keep writing. You are an inspiration to me!

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