Celebrations, parties, and informal get-togethers are an important part of life. I am a social creature, and Brian and I were never ones to let an occasion pass by uncelebrated. We'd have parties for fantasy football drafts, remarkable dates (we had a casino party on 07-07-07), holidays, anniversaries, birthdays, you name it. I still enjoy such events, but feel the glow of the festivities is a little less bright without Brian.
I've gone to a lot a parties and get-togethers this year, and hosted a few of my own. Sometimes, there are tears. Sometimes, I am not the best at planning and preparation. Sometimes, I don't have a card or gift for the birthday celebrant. Sometimes, I don't know if I'll feel like going to celebrate....and sometimes, I don't. Sometimes I go anyway.
Life goes on. Good fortune should be celebrated and good times shared. That's why I've made a point to keep doing this. Hell, one of Brian's good friends (who was one of his pallbearers) hosted a keg party at a bar the evening of Brian's burial. That seemed more fitting for him than a traditional wake. So I'm used to -- and I love -- socializing, mingling, drinking, swapping good stories over a glass of wine, a pitcher of beer, or a cigar.
At almost any event, though, I feel the absence of Brian. Sometimes, music will come on that he loved, and I know he's there in spirit, while simultaneously being painfully reminded that he's not there in person with us...and I miss that. I still miss him. Sometimes I know it's the unspoken thing in the room, the garage, the backyard -- everyone's thinking of Boka, and how he'd be running the table at Tippy Cup, sporting his black-and-gold, or how he'd call out the bullshitter at the party (every party has one), or how he'd be able to tell you who sings just about any given song, and probably a little bit about their background and influences.
Sometimes, I feel bad that I haven't been the full me this year. I know there are times I show up empty-handed, in a sour mood. I know I haven't been a very good friend, sister, or daughter. Sometimes, I forget birthdays and anniversaries. Simply put, I've been very self-centered this year, and I have to apologize to my friends and family for that. I know there's been a damper on some of your festivities because of my circumstances and my weakness. I am sorry.
I've broken down and cried at parties. I have my first wedding of the year coming up in about a month, and I'm afraid it will be hard. I'm so happy for my friends, but also know it will be a challenge. I already am planning to sit at the end of an aisle, in the back, so I can make an inconspicuous exit if it gets to be too much.
No one in my life signed up for "distracted, out-of-it Wendy" for 2010, but that's what everyone's getting. So, if I'm at your party, I'll cry if I want to. Thank you for understanding.