It has been four and a half months since I said the words that ended those 14 years together.  It has been much longer since it was really over, though acceptance was something else.  This has been a long journey and a hard one.  Both of those are understatements of mass proportion.

How are you? People ask this question every day, and what do we say?  We are fine.  And most days, I am able to answer without hesitation that I am fine, I am okay.

And then there are days like today.  When faced with the 'How are you?'s and the 'How are you doing?'s, it becomes a conscious choice.  Do I just say I'm fine, because it's easier?  Or do I let go of this other thing inside me that is clawing to get out, so hard that holding it back feels like a physical challenge?

Days like today where the grief of losing the life I thought I would live, of losing love, of being so alone, of the loss of the person I was married to because he no longer exists... it hits me like a tidal wave, and suddenly I am drowning.  I find myself unable to hold back tears, and I hear the strangled sobs escape my throat, and I am completely shocked and blindsided by this sudden rush of all that was and is no longer.

I am standing now in a place that I never knew could be.  I am pushing through the hardest part, held upright by the love and support of many people.  But in the end it is my journey, and those hands must fall away as I move towards what will be.  In those moments where the pain is so deep and so primal that I want to rip my heart right out of my chest, I know that no one can take that from me.  No one can do anything for me, I cannot go around it, I must go straight through it, there is no other way.

And it fucking hurts.