Exercise has been helping me move through my grief. Apart from the obvious health benefits, playing tennis has been therapeutic for my mind. It allows me to focus on something other than my grief.
I have been playing tennis over the past few weeks with a friend who is an exceptionally good player. I typically lose each game (but it’s the taking part that counts, right?) and he kindly offered to give me a handicap to place us on an even keel. In my competitive state, I flatly refused his offer on the basis that if and when I finally win, it will be that much more rewarding.
And this week it happened. Without the handicap, I got my reward. I got my victory. It may have been one win out of many loses but it FELT SO GOOD. So good that I even did a little victory dance at the end (and properly embarrassed myself).
Yesterday was Chris’s first day back at work. Up until now, we have been coming to terms with Eddie’s loss, together. Although men and women grieve differently, there was comfort in the knowledge that Chris was with me every day. Now we tread the path of grief separately. I know he found it difficult going back to work and I miss him terribly but it’s the first step back into the real world. And that world is now seen through a different lens.
On Tuesday, we were kindly offered tickets to Wimbledon from a close friend of ours. It was a day out which we would normally get really excited about but it was tinged with sadness. Whilst it was nice to watch the tennis, Chris said Wimbledon will miss out on the greatest player that never was. As will the England cricket team and England rugby team…
I feel like I have been catapulted into a new life and I am still trying to make sense of it all. Filling up the days are harder than it used to be but I am trying to keep myself busy. Coffee meet ups and lunches with other new mums have been replaced with coffee meet ups and lunches with bereaved mums who are bound by the same loss as me. It’s strange, I feel like I belong to an exclusive new club. It’s by invitation only; you wouldn’t want to join unless you were asked to. But I find great comfort in meeting women who I otherwise wouldn’t have met and there is an instant connection. Tragic, but instant.