So here's the short, but considered, update:
At the end of May, I had some surgery on my lady parts, hoping that they would be less excruciating for me in the long run. The surgery itself was successful and my recovery fairly fast; I am now mostly back to normal, and the pain is much improved even over my pre-surgery state. It will be some time before I know whether it was a total success, and I still get tired fairly quickly, but I am now almost completely healed.
Three weeks ago the Princess and I decided to postpone the wedding for a year. This was a difficult and emotional process for me, since I
am rigid in my thinking have a very hard time changing gears. But truly, with a little time and perspective I am seeing that this is actually a smart decision; we may even be able to plan the wedding for the Princess' homeland, which is her true wish. And I do like to grant princess wishes.
Then, almost two weeks ago, my dear aunt Becky passed away suddenly. In the absence of my mother, my father's sisters Becky and Cathy have been surrogates for me, together making up the most important adult female influence in my life so far. I was, and still am, devastated by this loss. Last week is a blur; there are big chunks of it that I don't even remember. This week my weeping has decreased to about once a day, and I am able to be alone, but I still can't read the condolence cards my lovely friends have sent, and I still am stunned that I must wake up and go to work and eat and sleep.
The result of all this is that I feel a little tilted; my little universe has undergone a fundamental shift. I don't think that this is objectively bad, though it is subjectively excruciating. Sometimes a change to the foundations of my life helps me focus on what is important, and often it helps me shed old, bad habits, belongings and ideas. It opens up space I didn't know existed; sometimes I didn't want to know--didn't think I needed to know--that space existed, but there it is just the same. The princess and the tween have been solid for me throughout this whole thing, and that has been an incredible gift. It still sucks, though. A lot. I would much prefer some low-level angsting about messy bedrooms instead of needing some hands to hold on to so that I can remember to breathe.
Just the same. We are here, you and I, moving forward. Still.