Expiry dates

I’m a little bit crazy most days. Always have been; always will be. But widowhood seems to have increased my insanity. In fact, it seems to have created new forms of crazy all together!

I thought about sharing a little window into that craziness last week, but decided against it because I don’t really want to bore you with these things. But tonight I had a bit of a meltdown so figured maybe saying it all “out loud” might help me work through it. (Or not. We’ll see.)

Here’s the deal: I can’t buy things with an expiry date of April 26. I just can’t do it. Two years ago, I was out shopping and grabbed a tub of yogurt. As always, I checked the expiry date and it was April 26. It was days before the first anniversary of Paul’s death (which is April 26 if you haven’t sussed that yet) and I panicked. I put the tub back and started searching for one with a later date. But they were all dated April 26. So I didn’t get any yogurt. Same thing last year: I couldn’t buy anything with an April 26 expiry date.

So, a few days ago I found myself grabbing a few groceries to tide me over until my next online shop. As I picked up a pack of fresh cheese, I noticed the expiry date (yes, April 26) and realised that there was no way I could do an online shop until after that date, for fear of having something delivered with that dreaded date imprinted on the packaging.

Anyhow, tonight I decided I’d make a nice salad for dinner. I grabbed a bottle of Ranch dressing that I’d bought a few months ago. After putting the salad together, I opened the bottle and noticed the date as I started pouring it—April 26. I froze. I didn’t know what to do. Do I throw it out? Do I force myself to move past this silly block? I didn’t know. I don’t know how long I stood there staring at the salad before deciding that I needed to eat it.

I grabbed a fork, picked up the salad, and went to sit on the couch. But I couldn’t bring myself to eat the salad. Instead, I found myself sobbing uncontrollably over a stupid date. I couldn’t do it. I just couldn’t. And with that, I went back to the kitchen and threw it out—the salad and the rest of the dressing.

Then I cried some more. I am, after all, completely insane.

I don’t know what will happen next year. I just know that, apparently, this year I’m still not ready to buy or eat food with an expiry date of April 26. As I said, widowhood has created new kinds of crazy for me!

4 Replies to “Expiry dates”

  1. It’s not crazy… Not even a little bit! It’s crazy to bore you with my list of crazy crap that I do for similar reasons… But it’s not crazy… Trust me! xxx

  2. I don’t think it’s crazy. I avoid things with dates of days I’d rather forget if I notice them too. Not necessarily expiration dates, but maybe I’ll avoid a Dr appointment on those days or going to something I’ve been invited to. Or if someone shares the same birthday as someone I am upset with (ie: my ex), I automatically think they might be the same way too. I think it’s as sane and feeling sad when that date comes around. You never know, maybe it’s a signal from above to avoid those foods. Maybe that dressing went bad a little early and you just saved yourself from gut wrenching pain. I’ll be joining you in the sadness every year. My birthday is the 27th, which happens to be the day I got my dog Angel as a rescue so I decided that we would share the same birthday since I didn’t know when hers was. It’s going to be the first one we haven’t shared together since she died so it’s going to be a tough one.

  3. Of course you cried, of course you threw away the bottle and NO you are not crazy! That date represents a complete and total change in your life, and not a change you wanted. Maybe you will never buy food with April 26th stamped on it again, and that’s ok:)

  4. Thanks, ladies! It’s nice to hear that other people think it sounds normal enough. I guess it just seems silly to me because I know that it’s not some Doomsday date, I just can’t handle it. And I worry what will happen in years to come when/if I have be in a meeting or something. (I actually was meant to see my haematologist on the 26th, but I’ve rescheduled.)
    I can’t wait until someone I care about has a baby or a wedding on that date–just to give it a happy meaning.

Join the conversation!