Sunday, December 27, 2015

Grow old with me

I had a realization the other day, something I would have shared with you of course.  So here I am.  I think our bodies are getting older than our mind will allow.  The other day I was teaching the class where I volunteer and we had a large group activity.  This means all the children gathered together in a larger room, sat on the floor and participated in a lesson then watched a short video.  In the past I've always sat on the floor with the kids.  There are chairs set up for the adult volunteer teachers so they do not need to sit on the floor.  I've always liked be close to my students even if it meant sitting "criss cross apple sauce".  Well I started on the floor and just couldn't do it for very long.  I ended up in one of the chairs set up for the adults.  That was quite a realization, my body is not young like it was.  I'm getting older, at least my body is getting older.  We were suppose to do this together.

Long long long time ago you asked me to marry you.  I said yes and we became engaged.  You still asked me to marry you even with the engagement ring on my finger.  You asked every single day.  If memory serves you asked every day even after we were husband and wife.  Eventually that morphed into "Will you grow old with me?"  We were suppose to grow old together, like gray hair, walkers, and dentures old.  Yes you were starting to go a little gray and you were amazed and maybe a little ticked off that I didn't have one gray hair, still don't.  You also brandished the walker, an electric blue walker at that.  You grew old with out me and here I am waiting to tease you because your age would advance and you would be older for the next 10 months, but that will not happen ever again.  You have stopped and I must go on.

I must not die of loneliness, though part of me has died with you.  The part that learned to love, I still remember sitting in that McDonalds on University in Des Moines and I uttered those words to you.  You taught me the power of those words, words I had never spoken to a man before you.  I allowed myself to be vulnerable to you, I trusted you, that part of me died.  The love that lives is the love of mother.   φιλία and ἔρως I learned from you and we both shared στοργή, and this is all that remains.  

I love you my handsome man. 

take care,

Friday, December 25, 2015

for both of us

Merry Christmas my handsome man.
 I find comfort in this place talking to you.
It sounds crazy, but I feel a little bit better after I write to you here.   Don't get me wrong I still miss you terribly.  I still wear your ring around my neck and close to my heart.

I was at a community gathering last night and I saw a loving husband reach for his wife's hand and they held hands during the rest of the gathering.  I had to look away because that loving gesture will never be again for us.  I was with our little girl and I had to look away and concentrate on something else.  I tried so hard, but the tears just came.  They were silent, brief, and she distracted, thank goodness.

I haven't slept well these last few weeks, and being tired makes everything so much harder.  I need to have better sleeping habits and exercise more.  I know I sound like the stereo typical new year's resolution.  I do feel loads better after I run, just to get the energy out, I just need to get motivated to do it.  I still remember you tracking me on the phone when I trained outside.  Checking on me to make sure I was not lost and doing ok.  You would come and pick me up with a water bottle of course.  Look I've pulled a mini Javier Marias :)

We didn't get a ton of Christmas cards this year, then again I couldn't bear to look at them really, I pretty much tossed them as they came, a few I did put up.  It's that time when you hear from those once a year friends and you realize there are a handful of people that don't know my world is a much darker place these days.  I've sent a few cards out with personal notes to share the information. There is one cousin I thought knew you were gone, but his card had your name handwritten next to mine & our little girl's name.  I'll have to write to him and cut out your obituary and send it along.

No more mail with Mr & Mrs, well no more important mail with Mr. & Mrs.  No more Kate & Richard or Rick & Kate as the older friends recall.  Next month it will be nine months you've been gone, long enough for a baby to start so small as a tiny spec of life and become part of the world.  Something we chose to do only once and it was the best thing we ever did.  We chose only once for many reasons & now I am on this earth determined to love her for both of us.

I love you handsome man.

take care

Tuesday, December 22, 2015


More and more things I see these days remind me of you.  It's like I'm becoming more sensitive.  All I remembering these days are your last.

Those last days when you were in so  much pain & I had to make the hardest decision, I absolutely knew at the time I made that choice that it was the right one, with all I knew and all I saw and watching you suffer, I knew it was the best decision, I had to convince you, put your mind at ease.

 Please tell me it was right, please show me something that says it was right.  I know with my mind that is not possible for you to show me now that it was the right thing to do, but my heart and my soul just aches to know you wanted to stop all the pain.  It was not even 24 hours when more news came with the optimistic bearer.  Did I listen to the pessimist too quickly, was my judgement clouded by all the pain you were suffering?  It was my decision to stop the treatment that moved you twice a day, that caused you so much pain, the treatment that gave hope.  Did I kill the hope?

You would never lie to me, I only made the decision because the pessimist gave his expert opinion.  I truly did what I thought was best, please please forgive me.  I watched you suffer and yet you were so kind and friendly to those that helped, those that caused the pain with hope of relief in the coming weeks.  You told me you wanted to continue, yet you told another you wanted to stop.  I know in my mind the choice I made was the inevitable decision, but did I take away any last precious moments you could have had with your princess? I am so sorry, I just realized that.  I stole time from you, please forgive me.

I broke my word, I said I would bring you home, and I didn't.  I am so sorry, I did absolutely everything I could.  Please know I would never ever have left your side, I had to think about our little girl.  The one night I did spend with you in that room was absolute torture for her.  I know you would want her to be taken care of first.  It absolutely crushed me, I was being pulled in different directions.  I was your wife, best friend watching you suffer.  I also have the professional background to understand what was happening to your body.

 I am the mother protecting her child, giving her the honest truth in words she can understand and live with, giving her the example of how to grieve and keep living with memories of her Daddy.  That is the hardest part, I have to be strong for her, she is the one who needs to understand that it's okay to fall apart and feel sad.  Yes, she & I do cry together sometimes, many times she will sob uncontrollably and I will use the skills I've learned and tools I have to make her feel loved, help her remember good things, and provide distraction.  I can cry with her, but I can not sob or stop being strong.  I can't have her think she needs to take care of me, that would be damaging to her life.  I have to think of her first!

She is the reason I get out of bed.  She is the reason I keep going.  When I am alone I am just consumed by the emptiness, I physically feel different, like there is something in my throat, like the breath entering does not fill my lungs capacity.  This fog comes over me and I just want to stop.  I want to stop thinking about what you would want me to do, stop feeling the emptiness that creeps into my throat.

It was not like this when my Mom died, you were here, you helped me.  I feel so alone.  Though I interact with people every day, I'm alone.  Someone once told me I was a cold person, that I didn't give off "warm fuzzies" and that assessment of my personality hurt, but rang true.  At my own mother's funeral a family friend was disgusted & could not believe how stoic I was being. You know what kind of person I am, you know how I think, you loved me for that.  I think I'm a good person and I do my best to contribute in this world, to think of others before myself, but I don't think people see that because I have this cold persona.

I don't feel loved anymore, I'm alone.  Yes I give off this cold persona, but you saw my tears when there were people I couldn't help, you saw my joy when I was able to make a small difference in someone's life. I trusted you and only you with everything that makes me tick. You understood what I meant before I could come up with the words to explain my idea; then you used your talented words to help me put that idea into action. You embraced me physically & made me feel safe.  You embraced my personality and made me feel loved.  I don't get hugs anymore, I think people see this cold person and don't want to embrace me, physically or personally.

I'm sorry I broke my word, I'm sorry I stole time, & I'm sorry I killed the hope.

I love you handsome man.

take care

Monday, December 21, 2015

It hurts to smile.

There have been more bad than good days lately.  I thought things were getting better, finally moving forward, but I don't know what happened, I'm just absolutely consumed by this emptiness.  It hurts to smile, I'm having a hard time faking it these days.  We went to the store the other night.  I returned the cart to the cart return and walked to the passenger side of the car and opened the door, it was only then I realized I was expecting you to drive us home.

I remember when you taught me to drive stick, 5 speed.  I can still remember the shift positions in that little ford aspire.  You told me a story about someone mistakenly put the car in reverse meaning to put it in 5th gear.  It no longer became 5th, it became go.

I still remember you coming with me to the grocery store, just so we could be together.  You sitting in that library watching me study.  Me with my earphones listening to lectures I attended and studying until it was part of me, not realizing the friend bringing me coffee in the library was becoming part of me.

The very first time we ever danced it was so natural, it was like we fit.  We were the best of friends and slowly realized that would be our life.

You taught me what love is, I know that sounds so corny and totally bad song lyrics. Before I ever laid eyes on you, I had not been in a relationship, not that I didn't want one, it just never happened.  I had friends in high school & college and did things as friends, but never had a "boyfriend" in high school or college.

I made some major life decisions in my early twenties.  I seriously considered joining a convent & becoming a teacher.  I was already working in pharmacy, but I felt that is where my calling was pulling me.  Part of my decision was how my Mom would feel if I went the convent / teacher route.  I had a discussion with a friend and chose to pursue pharmacy as a career.  That was the right decision: lots of hard work, lots of growing up, and I found you.  Now I feel lost and aimless.  I go through the motions, taking care of our little girl,  loving her for both of us, working, & doing my best to think of others.

I don't know what to do about this emptiness.  Who will make the pledge with me on your birthday, to make the year the best ever. You came up with that pledge and we've recited it every year since December 31, 1998.  I miss you so much.

I love you handsome.

take care.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

We must start again.

Days are good
Days are bad
The sun goes up and goes down
Then we must start again.

What story shall I think about tonight, though I should close my eyes and sleep.  What aspect of our life do I dare remember?  All I can think of is what is not.  The emptiness echoes, yet I'm surrounded by noise.  The places I've been so many times are not the same, they're crippling, paralyzing  and force me not to move, my mind stuck in a place I can never return.  I want this over and done, why can't it be tomorrow.  When will this end, I fear it will not and the echo will be my life's forever song.

I love you handsome now and for the rest of my days.

take care