Life and Big Things, Like Dominoes

Last night, I played dominoes. I sat at a table with 4 others, re-learned the rules (because it’s always so long between times that I play), picked my 8 tiles, and made trains. So simple. Fun. I laughed…with reservation. I got into the game…sort of. I enjoyed the other players…as much as I could. But…I played.

The couples I am with only know me. They had never met Jana. I let them know Jana died, they responded with sympathy, even let me tell my story and share some pictures. Then…we moved on in conversation and it was good. It wasn’t weird. I am thankful for this time. Almost…normal?

It was like a slice of what normal used to be like. Wow, it still exists. I am not normal, but maybe I am beginning to incorporate myself back into things that are normal.

Here is something… I always miss Jana, but last night, I did not picture her here, playing dominoes with us. I think the reason for that is; we wouldn’t have done it. I am at an Airbnb (which we had stayed in one), my room is in the home, sharing common space with the wonderful couple who owns the house (which we would not have done). This would have been something Jana would have felt uncomfortable doing. I hung out with the hosts and their friends. We would have gone somewhere and done something else in the city and not met these folks. The whole scenario would not have happened, most likely. This experience, in terms of “Chris and Jana”, is most definitely Chris. And…I enjoyed it.

Now the guilt… Here is my disclaimer: I would rather have Jana back and do things the way we did things! But, you know, I cant have her back. I must find Chris. I must share memories, life events, conversation, and play dominoes. Grieve and LIVE. Underneath this grief, I have a life. I have a heartbeat and breath that the Lord has given. What about that? I can’t forget this life…my life.

Author: kcradioman

I am the Director of Twin Oaks Family Care in Excelsior Springs, Mo. I hold a Master of Arts in counseling from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and, currently, am working on the Doctor of Ministry in Care and Counseling at MBTS. My wife and I were married in 1998 and we had 2 daughters. On July 26th, 2019, my lovely wife, Jana, was diagnosed with Leukemia and began treatment. On Aug 7th, 2019, she died of complications from the chemo treatment. God prepared us and sustains us. My way of grieving includes being open and transparent about my feelings. My hope is to provide a voice of support for others experiencing grief.

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