Sunday, April 23, 2017

death rattle

Today I did some current education reading to keep up with changes in my line of work.  One section was about end of life therapy.  It really hit me, it talked about the "death rattle", referring to the patients audible breaths at the end of life.  I listened to those death rattles  in 2010 at my Mom's death bed and just two years ago with you.  That is a sound I'll never forget, it's a sound of pain that echoes in my mind.  It reminds of the pain you were in and the heaviness on my heart when I made those decisions.  The agony of reading to you between those death rattles, playing music, anything I could do to make the last moments of your life bearable.  There were moments when the rattle was so very rhythmic and then all of a sudden there was such a long pause I panicked that you had taken your last.  The moment that pause stopped being a pause and we called your name I'll never forget.  You were just gone.  You're still gone, day after day after day.  I love you so handsome man.

take care

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Thank you

I know how you personally felt about belief and religion.  You expressed your opinions and though we did not agree and it was a very difficult trying time for me that first year you understood & expressed your opinions, you were always respectful.  Once I got over the fact that there was an aspect of our life that we were not on the same page I accepted it and in some respects took on some of your thoughts and truly took your explanations to heart.  It took about a year, but I loved you and respected you so much during our life together that it made us stronger, if that was even possible.  Over these past two years I've struggled to find you in things.  So many say you're in my heart, I'll always have memories, blah blah blah.  A few years ago, wow I don't like saying "a few years ago" to reference a time you were already gone.  A few years ago I saw a beautiful sunrise on our daughter's birthday and I so desperately wanted it to be from you, a sign your soul was still being.  In my mind and my heart I knew it wasn't that case.  We actually had a real conversation, we were driving on Jefferson at dusk, it was during that first year of me trying to accept your position, I said something along the lines of how beautiful the sunset was and how can there not be a God.  You smiled at me with those beautiful brown eyes and that magnificent mind of yours and made your argument appealing to my sense of science.  You were by no means disrespectful to my beliefs and my struggle to accept your beliefs.  On her birthday I knew that sunrise was not you.

Today, Easter Sunday 2017, it's been 2 years and five days since you left this earth, in your opinion you just turned off.  That's what has been so hard for me to accept, that fact that you just turned off and you're gone.  I understand that was your belief in life, and you even said you could be wrong.  You lived a good life, you were kind, intelligent, passionate about issues that effected people's lives.  You called yourself a humanist, you believed in treating others as you want to be treated.  I digress, today Easter Sunday the homily was about faith, atheism, and how when we act with compassion for others that can not just be science.  The homily really spoke to me and it felt like it was for me personally.  I served mass this morning, I was a eucharistic minister and gave the bread to individuals during communion.  As I was standing on the alter during the final prayers this breeze came across and it was so peaceful.  I looked over to the doors, they were open which is very unusual.  I don't think I've ever seen the door opened during the middle of mass.  The sunlight was coming through and this breeze of gentle wind brushed across the altar, I truly felt that was you telling me you are still here, your soul did not just turn off when you took that last breath.  I can't tell you the peace I felt, it was nothing like I've ever experienced before.  Thank you.  I love you handsome man.


take care

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

come and gone

The date has come and gone.  The distraction is over and the reality sets in, you're still not here.  Today was so much more difficult than yesterday.  I didn't talk much today at work, as you so well know that is extremely unusual for me.  It hurt to smile.  Everything the radio played was painful and reverberated the hollow.  I have no desire, no motivation, no energy.  I wish I could just go to sleep right now, I'm so tired.

Your princess has been angry and I get the brunt of it for the most part.  Once she gets it out of her system she is so much better.  731 days down and a lifetime to go.

I counted an RX today, it reminded me of your pain in your last months of life.  It was one of the drugs that had to be increased and increased and increased.  You called it "hydro-mo-fo".  Made me laugh when you would say it, brought tears to my eyes today because it was never enough.

I noticed yesterday the tulip bulbs we planted last fall are starting to sprout some green.  We planted some around your favorite tree and around your princess's favorite tree.  Your tree is the one sporting the green.  That brought so much joy, I wanted to think it was you showing me you're ok.  I know that is just so silly and stupid and you did not believe in such nonsense, but it would sure make me feel better, I just can't allow myself to have that thought.  You would simply say "you planted the bulbs in the fall why wouldn't they come up?"  "Where's the evidence?"

I've also been thinking about what my work schedule has been like.  During the holidays I was at a location that was extremely stressful and I didn't have the down time to fall so hard and crash.  It still wasn't easy, but work seems to help keep me distracted.  Monday was shaping up to be a rough day with all the memories flooding to my mind, again at work I was saved.  I was scheduled at a store that is not to difficult and would give lots of opportunity for my mind to wander and think about the events of two years ago.  I worked with a young man, new to the job, it was his 2nd day.  I needed to pick up much of the slack and that was just fine by me.  The day wasn't too stressful yet it went fast with no time to dwell in the painful memories.

Tomorrow will come it will be a good day.

I love you handsome mane.


take care

  

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

math



We moved here as a family of three and now a family of two.  


Spring is here and trying to take hold.  Today we celebrated you, by going to the bookstore, I should say bookstores.  Today is the day you left this earth and as you put it, turned off like a switch.  Just gone.  The last weeks of your life were so painful and so many difficult decisions had to be made.  I've been struggling with that these last few weeks, remembering all the choices I had to make, how to include our young daughter without it being a burden to her.  To keep her innocent and yet connected to you.  I did the best I could as I do today.  She's so much older now and understands so much more as we do with age and experience.  Losing your Dad at 8 is not the experience you want your child to encounter, to use has a reference in these formative years, yet want and reality are not the same many times.  

Today I did not focus on the last day of your life, the people who where there, the every detail, the places we sat, the things we said to each other.  As today went on little things came to my mind.  We saw a man wearing a Barcelona jersey and both your princess & I smiled.  We started the day with some of your favorites, your favorite bookstore, coffee, and lunch at one of your favorite places.  Then we ventured out and made some new favorites for just the two of us.  We went to some places that we did not see as a family of three, we explored and discovered just the two remaining.  

We came home to a kind gesture of flowers, we had to pick them up, a long story, but at the flower shop your princess saw a statuette that belongs to the same collection of the picture above.  We've had the piece on the left for over 10 years, a gift from my Mom who passed away seven years ago yesterday.  Your princess asked if we could get the piece on the right because it looked like a daughter & mother sitting and talking; and it reminded her of our family of two.  

Here comes round three.  

I love you handsome man. 

take care

Sunlight Above the Trees


March 23, 2013



“Sunlight Above the Trees”

a song by C. Shea
with help from R. Shea


I see sun

Sunlight above the trees
Sunlight in the breeze
Sunlight for you and me



When the sun goes down
I fall to the ground
Sun, why did you leave

Then morning comes
And the dawning sun
Wakes me from my sleep

Sunlight above the trees
Sunlight in the breeze
Sunlight for you and me


Day goes by
Drifts into night
I get tucked in tight

On the pond
Rests a graceful swan
Makes me so happy

Sunlight above the trees
Sunlight in the breeze
Sunlight for you and me



your to do list

Here we are, year three begins.  Farther and farther away are the dates and times.


I found this among your saved documents.

April 1, 2010


A to do list for life

See my little girl graduate college.
Make my own salsa.
Master Greek, Latin, and French.
Write at least two novels.
Write one non-fiction book.
Read all of: Proust, Shakespeare, Montaigne, Homer, Saint-Simon.
Learn to read music.
Learn to play an instrument.
Paint an oil painting.
Carve something out of stone.
Design a boat and a house (even if just a crude drawing).
Go to France, England, Spain. Italy, Greece, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Scotland,
Ireland, the South Pacific, Australia, Hawaii, and Canada.
Sail a boat.
Take a cruise.
Take a journey by train.
Ride in a hot-air balloon.
Ride a camel.
Ride a horse on the beach
Hike to the top of a mountain
Paddle across a lake in the Autumn



I love you handsome man

take care

Monday, April 3, 2017

Nothing stops

April is here.  Nothing stops, days end and then begin.  Sometimes it's hard to remember and other times the details never leave me alone for a moment.  I'm not lost, I stay the course yet sometimes I take a detour just to see where it goes.  A side trip for selfish reasons, a detour for me alone. Sometimes I'm scared I'll lose my self in the detour and not be who I am.

Your princess asked me something today, really made me think about the person I am.  She asked me how I do it.  How do I not show my feelings?  She remembers details after your death, when she was upset, sad, angry, and so many emotions flooding all at once.  She said I didn't seem upset and wondered how I do it, not show my feelings.  I told her it was not a choice, it was like being right handed, it's just how I am.  I told it wasn't necessarily a good thing.  Inside you are just torn up and broken yet outside nobody has a clue and thinks everything is fine.  They comment on how strong you are, how you're doing everything right.  I guess I don't know what to expect, what I want.  What do you say?  It's a journey, a path I must take on my own I suppose.  I don't know how to reach out to people when I'm sad, I don't know how to ask for a hug, it is so incredibly difficult for me to ask for help for myself.

I relive those last weeks of your life when I am alone.  I remember all the details, the decisions, the driving back a forth to the hospital wishing I could just stay with you all the time.  Reading to you as we wait for the staff to take you to the procedure.  Reading to you as a distraction from the pain, searching, searching for the right passages to read, passages you found the most beautiful.

I miss you so much.  I miss who I am when I was with you, I feel that person is slipping away, she's barely recognizable.  She was beautiful, confident, smart, I only know because you constantly told me, made me feel that way, allowed me to be her, encouraged me.

Nothing stops, the new day begins.


take care