Sunday, December 16, 2007

How I became MrsGrumpy...or Learn how to talk right, Laura...

After so many years of using it, having people (you nice people, you) tell me that I'm not grumpy at all, having people think my husband was a miserable SOB (he definitely wasn't), I will post the story here. I have posted it here and there on the internet, as a comment on some one's blog, or in response to a message board,"How did you come up with your screen name query?". I usually answered far too late and so on it went. People thinking I was an older woman...so much so that many people (in my internet circle) were stunned at Leonard's and my ages. 37. 37 is what he always gets to be... But I'm getting off track. It goes like this.

We have a couple of dear friends who happen to be married. I met her through our daughter's friendship, and Leonard later became best friends with her husband. This is a the perfect grouping. All involved genuinely like and cared for each other. The bonus being our children getting along. Over the last 8 years we have spent a good majority of our free time together. Euchre parties (okay, not parties... 4 of us, cards, beer and laughter...God, I don't want that to be over), coffe drinking, poker tournaments for the guys, Costco shopping for the girls, birthday parties etc... One night we all went out to dinner. We were sitting all lined up and smooshed together in one of those booths that has the divider that can be removed. The kids were slap happy crazed and I had a headache. One of their daughters asked me a "What if..." type question that I can't remember anymore. I replied,"Well...that would make Mrs Grumpy very Harper..." and a username was born. They have also been known to call me MrsHarpy, but that would have created internet flamewars by its mere existance I fear.

Writing this, and remembering those days-Days that are no longer my present but only exist as a (seemingly) far distant past-is killer. All I want is that back. All I want is my children's Daddy back, Luke's (Luke is the friend) moron twin back...my whole life back.

Yesterday we went to a get together at one of Leonard's cousin's houses. It was an impromptu Christmas, bon voyage (another cousin is moving), let the kids play parties. My position is now an odd one. I just don't belong. I didn't want to go, but it is so good for James to see his family. It is so bad to stand on the porch I used to stand on with Leonard, watch the men he used to hang out with continue to hang out...only without him. Answer questions about how I'm feeling. I usually reply with,"I'm still here..." but it gets tired and I am tired and I am also freaking them out a bit I am sure. But one thing is true, while I long to be with him, I cannot and will not do that to my children. This is my punishment...for what, I do not know.

19 comments:

Lisa said...

Dear Laura,

I found you via Ronni's Rants. She's a dear friend of mine. I was forunate to have the opportunity to meet both Ronni and Jim for my 40th birthday party.

I'm so sorry for your loss. I wish I had something more insightful or helpful to say.

Lisa
The Lisa Life

rachd said...

What a great story! :o)

Now then, this is no punishment, you have done *NOTHING* to "deserve" this. I promise you this. You are a wonderful, warm, caring, loving woman who has been nothing but a fantastic wife and mother. Do NOT beat yourself up over this, PLEASE! You are doing the absolute best you can and that's all anyone can ask of you.

HUGS!

Laurie said...

Hi Laura,

I knew it! I knew you didn't have a grumpy spot in your heart:) And I know you don't want to hear this, but my heart hurts too much to know you feel you did something to cause this and are now being punished. It just isn't so, and I hope and pray some day soon your heart agrees. I am so sorry that your pain of needing Leonard and the pain of punishment run such a fine line that they feel like one in the same. Regret, maybe, but not guilt ever. Life happens in spite of our best intentions and short comings.
You are getting through even if it does not feel so, and you do it for your kids too. I see you doing the best that you can and I admire you for it and cheer you on. Please know that you are a wonderful lady and a wonderful mom and wife. You honor Leonard so much here with your words of love for your life together. And most of all, you are loved.

Laurie in Ca.

Kesha said...

Laura; I echo what rachd said!!

You are not being punished for anything. You did NOT do this or anything to deserve this.

My thoughts and prayers are always with you.

:hug:

kesha

Donna said...

Sweetie!!.....you Know you didn't do Anything....you know! Sending Much love and hugs to you tonight!!

haylee said...

Dear Laura:

Cute story -- I am a master of spoonerisms at times too -- especially just before a migraine. One of my favorites is complimenting a friend on her "dretty press". Look up the examples on wikopedia -- it's unbelievable that Mr. Spooner had such a tangled tongue - or should I say tungled tang.

If our troubles in life are a punishment for our misdeeds, whatever I did must have included a bop on my head as I such as hell can't remember.

Bad things *do* happen to pood geople -- whoops -- good people.

Wishing you peace....
haylee

Jess in Nebraska said...

Laura - Loved the story as I have often wondered where "Mrs Grumpy" came from.
PLEASE do not think for a SECOND longer that YOU did ANYTHING. DO NOT even let your mind go there. Absolutely the opposite. You care so much for those around you and your love is so incredibly evident for Leonard and your kids.

I'm sorry this holiday season must suck so much, especially with all the family get togethers, etc....but how great you went last night for your son.

Sharpie said...

MrsGrumpy - there is a few sayings that I have taped above my desk...

"That which doesn't kill us makes us stronger" and (with a picture of a screaming man under a train) "This too shall pass". I know neither seem to fit for you now - but I assure you - you ARE getting stronger and this unbearable pain will pass into a dull ache - in due time.

HUGE HUGS!!

Ronni said...

I do know how you feel at the party. I went to one a couple of weeks ago, and several well-meaning people asked me how I was doing. I always said, "I'm trying not to think about it tonight," or something like that. some of them didn't get the hint, even then. When my friend got her SO to dance with me, I felt that he was very gallant, but I hate being the pity partner...

I've been searching my soul for the reasons for my husband's death, and there are times when I "know" it had nothing to do with me, but then, in the dead of night, the doubt creeps in. In daylight, my thoughts are much healthier.

The girl left behind said...

Think of all the widows and widowers you have shown compassion. I am one of them. Do you think we, too, are being punished with the loss of the one they love most? Do you think we deserved this?

If your answer is "no," then that can be the only answer for you, too. It feels like it is punishment, but you did nothing to be punished for. All you did was love; that is what we're here for. It is the best and highest thing we do in this life; that is not worthy of punishment.

Hugs.

Jackie said...

Laura, you didn't do anything to be punished for.

I don't think you're grumpy at all, but I must admit I cracked up at the thought of you having the username MrsHarpy. Your brief ill-fated forays into the Women's Rights forum at DU would have been even more ill-fated.

I'll give you a call tomorrow. Ready to come visit the Garden State?

Kathy said...

I enjoy that you share your memories. You and Leonard made some good stories! I wish you didn't feel like you were being punished. But then I also wish that you weren't having to go through all of this awfulness. Thank you for your words of support, when I read them, all I could think was that I too, wished for you, the same. Hugs....

The Stevens Family said...

You are not being punished for anything and you are making great strides whether you see it or not. As for freaking them out a bit, do it, they're your feelings.

Thanks for explaining Mrs. Grumpy, I often wondered.

The Stevens Family said...

You are not being punished for anything and you are making great strides whether you see it or not. As for freaking them out a bit, do it, they're your feelings.

Thanks for explaining Mrs. Grumpy, I often wondered.

Jess said...

What a funny story about your username. I have to admit that I was curious as to how you began using it!

As for the rest, I agree with Rach. Warm hugs to you, Laura.

rbnyc said...

I used to think you were an old lady with a grumpy husband too. I was surprised when I found out you're younger than me.

Especially because you gave me so much comfort and support and had such wise and beuatiful words for me when I lost the baby, I thought you must be older.

But no, you're just wise and beautiful.

I wish I could give you the same kind of support you've given me over the years. I wish this never happened to you and your family and I could be providing you support over some much simpler problem. All I can say is that you have a right to your feelings.

It would be great if we could meet in person someday and get our kids together.

Your still in my thoughts and in my heart.

Rene

KamaAina said...

That is absolutely classic! Plus, it's the first thing I've read here that made me laugh. In the words of the immortal Martha Stewart, "It's a good thing."

Enough with the punishment thing already! I can't quite put my finger on it, but there seems to be something vaguely Republican about that whole mindset...

Shari said...

Like all the others said, you aren't being punished.

I am glad that you are getting out, even if it's just for the kids. It's good to be around people sometimes. But I do understand how you feel about not really really feeling like a part of the family without him. I am always "left out" after the small talk. They just don't know how to talk to me. I only see them three times a year.

I still love the spoonerism. Or should I say spove the loonerism. LOL. That looks funny. Makes me think of the poem about drinking...I'm not as drunk as thinkle peep, I'm just a little slort of sheep...

Maya's Granny said...

Laura,
I was six when my father died, and it certainly felt like I was being punished. Years later I could remember the misbehavior that I thought had brought it on. But, it was not caused by me, there was nothing I could have done to prevent or change it. And Leonard's death was not caused by you. And, although you are an adult and I was a child, I know that there was nothing you could have done to prevent or change it. Because of the way he died, it is tempting to think that if only you had done this or that or not done the other, it wouldn't have happened. But that is not how it is.