Sunday, December 25, 2016


Merry Christmas Love,
I'm making your favorite.  I did not make it last year, I just couldn't.  I volunteered to to make it this year, but really wasn't feeling it, still not.  I miss you so much.  This year will be the first Christmas I haven't had lasagna for Christmas dinner ever.  My entire childhood and all those Christmas dinners with you, you adopted my family tradition.  As a married couple we did not do squid and linguini on Christmas Eve, but we started our own.  Your fish stew you made and my eggplant parmesan.  You said that was your favorite dish, my eggplant parmesan.

Let me tell you a story about your favorite dish.  So tonight after we get home from festivities at a family gathering I began the task of making this famous dish.  I'm frying the breaded eggplant and layering the finished product with sauce and cheese.  I didn't realize smoke was starting to form even though I'm using the fan over the stove.  The smoke alarm goes off screeching 'FIRE EVACUATE' the dogs start to howl I'm frantically opening windows, opening the sliding glass door, turning on ceiling fans, and climbing the step stool to try & disengage the smoke detector.  One other detail, the alarm serenade began at 12:10am.  All I have to say is this eggplant better be good.

I really miss you.  I love you handsome man.

take care

Monday, December 12, 2016


I'm falling, slipping, inside out, the hollow is enveloping me.  I just want seclusion, I don't want to do the daily tasks of life, I don't want to be around people, I don't want to be around.  I'm desperately trying not to be selfish, not to just wallow in my own thoughts.  I'm trying to make you proud.  I am so self conscious, feel like I'm being judged by every word or action I complete.  I feel so overwhelmed.  I'm trying to keep things cheerful and jolly for our little girl.  I'm trying not to stress her out, trying to keep things light, yet ensure she learns responsibility.  I miss you so much, I still feel so empty & lonely.

I love you handsome man and miss you so much

take care

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

I'm sinking, drowning, don't know what to do.  I don't want to be a debbie downer to others enjoying their holiday.  I'm tired.  I have no motivation, no energy.  I wish I could just sit in my room and just be by myself.  I have obligations, promises to keep.  I have to fake life with a smile. It hurts to smile.  I really don't want to do this any more.

Sunday, November 13, 2016


Invisible is how I would describe myself in social situations, that's when I get the courage to actually be in social situations.  I just want to give up and stay in my house, stay in my room and stare at this screen.  I think that is something I want to do, just lay low and let the world go by, no one will notice if I'm not there.  I can just withdraw into my invisibility, melt away.

Friday, November 11, 2016


I miss you handsome man.  I heard some beautiful music by some exceptional musicians.  You would have loved it.  I miss holding your hand.  

take care

Sunday, November 6, 2016

‘farewell, o companion’

One of my favorite tales in Ovid's Metamorphoses is that of Philemon & Baucis. I went looking for the book you bought, the book we got after we watched the play adapted from Metamorphoses. I came across some notes you wrote to me.  Notes I haven't seen in years.  One written in September of 1998, we'd only known each other a month and our friendship meant so much to each other. I  found others, a note you wrote when I was pregnant and I was taking an exam that would determine our financial future and your words gave me comfort & no matter the outcome we would be fine because we are a team.  Other notes with latin and greek phrases.  

I love you handsome man.  I miss you so.  Thank you for showing me so many beautiful things, teaching me love, being my friend, my partner.  

talia tum placido Saturnius edidit ore:
‘dicite, iuste senex et femina coniuge iusto
digna, quid optetis.’ cum Baucide pauca locutus
iudicium superis aperit commune Philemon:
‘esse sacerdotes delubraque vestra tueri
poscimus, et quoniam concordes egimus annos,
auferat hora duos eadem, nec coniugis umquam
busta meae videam, neu sim tumulandus ab illa.’
vota fides sequitur: templi tutela fuere,
donec vita data est; annis aevoque soluti
ante gradūs sacros cum starent forte locique
narrarent casus, frondere Philemona Baucis,
Baucida conspexit senior frondere Philemon.
iamque super geminos crescente cacumine vultus
mutua, dum licuit, reddebant dicta ‘vale’ que
‘o coniunx’ dixere simul, simul abdita texit
ora frutex: ostendit adhuc Thyneius illic
incola de gemino vicinos corpore truncos.

-Ovid's Metamorphoses 
8.703 - 8.720

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Kindness all around.

What a difference.  These last few weeks have been difficult and just the last few days have been nearly unbearable, it went from agony to emptiness to nothing.  You know the phrase misery loves company, well I got pulled down further and further.  I came across two individuals having issues of their own.  One I tried to help and just couldn't, no matter what I did or said it just didn't matter. I ended up letting my shield down a little and shared a bit with this individual, not a whole lot of detail, just something a little more personal than I normally would.  This all took place with the anonymity of the internet.

Another that came up, a very dear friend struggling with depression, I was already at a very low point and just couldn't help or couldn't even try.

 The first person I tried to help and let down my guard with, responded later and the words were for so full of meaning &  kindness.  It really turned things around for me, it made the rest of that day fall into the good category.  I also was uplifted by my students, our daughter included.

Today has been so good, I did something nice for someone else and it always feel so good to give kindness.  So far today is in the good day column, I work today and believe it or not that usually helps keep that column full.

I so love you handsome man and still miss you like crazy.

take care

Tuesday, November 1, 2016


Another day is done, another day without you, 569.   Yesterday was so wonderful, today not so much, they are both gone now.  Our little one missed you a great deal today.  As a matter of fact I was planning to do something for me tonight & I couldn't, she needed me instead.  That's twice I've tried to do something for myself, something to recharge or at least identify with others.  Both times failed, the first was of epic proportions.  Please don't think I'm upset with our daughter, I'm absolutely not, she has a gift I wish I possessed.  I can ask her if she's alright or if she needs me to stay with her and she has the smarts to accept help & she can also ask for help.  That is still something I can not do, or at least it's something I'm working on to learn.

After our venture out tonight we came home and she chose to write in her journal.  She told me she really misses you and she wrote how she needs to see you & hear your voice.  I suggested we watch a video of you and she jumped at the chance.  She even knew exactly which one she wanted to watch.  I couldn't find it, I looked and looked and just couldn't find it.  I kept clicking on menus and finally it came up.  We both laughed and remembered. You were so full of joy and so happy in these videos. She felt better & went to sleep with a smile & a healing memory.     As we watched I alone noticed the date stamp & did not share this with her.  It was exactly one year before you left this world and our lives.  One month before we knew your diagnosis.

I'm not going in the direction I want to go.  Things are happening and I don't like it.  I'm not cooking, I'm not exercising, I was doing so well, making progress.  Stopped. No energy, no desire.  If I could I would just stay in our room and just lay here.  I'm so tired.  I crave darkness.  I want this to end.  I am so lost without you.  I am so tired and in this terrible fog.  I don't see what's ahead for me and I can't even move through it to see forward.  I'm stuck.

I wish you would show me you haven't left me, just a little something.  I know that's not scientific and there is no evidence for such things and it's not anything you put stock into.

Please help me.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

A good day

Today was a good day.  I still missed you my love, but it was a good day.  Had some friends over at the house, really they're family.  I had real conversations today, people actually listened to what I had to say it was so wonderful.  There were even moments of pause and 'wait let me think about that for a minute'.  Funny, there were two couples: one married 30 or so years and one still new.  That totally reminds me of people always telling us that after the first year the "honeymoon is over" but for us that never ever happened.  I think that's because we worked to make the other happy, strove to to make the other feel loved & important, really that wasn't hard it was like breathing. I think that is why there are days I struggle to breath & use medication to help my lungs, but nothing helps my soul.  When you hurt I hurt, when you're in pain I cry, when you fail my insides are tore up, yet I find the words to build you back up, when you accomplish & succeed I'm proud.   Bringing you joy, giving you meaning, sharing passion was my contribution to our life, your contribution was the mirror of mine, though I think you did it better than I ever could.   I remember you would say you got the better end of the deal.

Today was a good day.  Tomorrow will come.

I love you handsome man.

take care.  

Friday, October 28, 2016

tomorrow comes

Another day has finished and tomorrow the sun will rise.

Tomorrow we watch a friend row, an amazing young woman, a woman you had an impact on.  We met her when she was only 12 years old.  You taught her to play chess, encouraged discussions about art, politics, and literature.  We invited her to outings down town, brought her to exhibits at the art museum.  She was home from college and visited you your last night.  You saw that potential when she was just a child and now she is a young college student.  She has been an excellent role model for your princess.  She is so intelligent and caring.  She truly looked up to you and enjoyed our conversations.

She would babysit our little one when we went on dates, you know what's funny about that, we would always start talking about our little girl and we'd only be a mile away from our house.  We'd joke to see how long we would last before we would start talking about her.  I also remember we'd warn the babysitter that we might be back really really late, of course we were home by 9pm or 10pm.  I digress, once we came back home and paid our neighbor for her babysitting services, she would totally hang out with us and it was just awesome.  This young articulate high school student wanted to discuss events happening in our world.  After we got home she chat with us for a few hours, then we'd flip the light switch off our deck and watch her go home.  Now she is a junior in college, president of the row club, and an amazing young woman.

Good night my love.

take care

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

del mar

I picked out new glasses today,  simple task right? Not really, not for me.  We did everything together, we helped each other, fashion is not my thing, I don't have an eye for that.  You would say ojos del mar, eyes of the sea.  You commented on my eyes so very often, you said they were beautiful, you always made me feel beautiful, again not my thing, I don't wear make up or do much with my hair you said that was because I didn't need to I was naturally beautiful.  You said it so often and with such sincerity I believed you and felt so comfortable in my own skin.

Anyway, I chose new frames today, something I don't take lightly because this will be part of my face for the next few years.  I know it sounds so silly, but this is the first time I've done this without you.  Fortunately the person at the optical department was very kind and truly helped me find a pair of frames that would look nice.  He started by saying "let me see your eyes that's where I usually like to start," he described them as a blueish green and we found a pair of frames.  That reminded me of ojos del mar. 

Most of the firsts have come and gone, agonizing and painful yes, I'm learning that the seconds are no better, almost seems worse.  This second time around is just brutal and I don't know what to do.  The summer was so good, maybe it's because everything was a distraction and we did so much.  We did things we'd never done before and even did some things that were for the three of us and now are just for two.  Even though the summer was such a whirl wind I missed you every single day.  Hiking at the parks, adventures camping, and our promise I kept to introduce other exciting & foreign places to our daughter.  A  promise we made as parents, talking about giving our daughter experiences we never had, an experience you'll never have though you would appreciate it most of all.  It's now that is so difficult, fall, winter, holidays, anniversary, birthdays.

I miss caressing your face and feeling that slight stubble right at your jaw line, holding hands with our fingers inter locking and your thumb above mine.  I miss your touch, putting my freezing feet on your warm legs as we lay in bed on a cold winter night.  Watching you read with your non-dominant eye, laying on your side with your nightstand lamp lighting the path for your eye to travel.

I'm drowning and falling, I sit here so cold and shivering.  There are people that have met me now and only know the hollow me, the one that can't seem to find a purpose on this planet, the one who lives between distractions & routines for our little one.  I use to care about things, to try and make this world a better place, now I'm just here.  I am so tired and cold and done.

I love you handsome man.

take care

Sunday, October 16, 2016


Saw this posted on social media, I'm struggling, not sure what my purpose is or the reason.  I feel like I'm being so selfish, I'm not doing any good for anyone.  My heart beats, it pounds, but for what?  This is an existence.  I don't want to do this anymore.  I exist for her.  I go through the motions.  I'm falling apart, grasping, but there is nothing there to hold.  A choice: bitter, better, cease, continue

Friday, October 14, 2016

Hospice time of year.

Autumn use to be my favorite season.  The weather changed, it was comfortable, not scorching hot or so humid it's hard to breath and not unbearably cold.  It's the season my birthday occurs.  It is full of colors and beauty.  Last year I barely even noticed the season, it was the first fall without you.

This year I equate this season as the hospice time of year.  It's the period before death, a service to try and make things beautiful and comfortable before death, yet death still comes and it is still ugly.  This season is the usher to times of happiness for many, a time that was excitedly welcomed by me in the past.  It all began with my birthday, a day you made so very special, even if we were home you fussed about me and you and your princess would sing to me.  No one has sung happy birthday to me for two years now, it's silly but I miss that.  You knew I didn't necessarily like a big deal made about my birthday, but I so miss the little things.

Of course fall is the precursor to the 'Holiday Season' and all the family joy that is to bring to life.  I'm trying my best to keep things upbeat and positive for our little girl, but I'm struggling something fierce.  We're going to the apple orchard this weekend, a tradition we did each year around this time, we're going with two other couples, a reminder we are no longer a couple, no longer Team S, just the S Ladies here on out.

November brings Thanksgiving, your favorite holiday and just a week later would be our 15th wedding anniversary, it would of been your turn to choose how we celebrated.  Christmas and all the little traditions we did as a family, all gone.  Your birthday, that time of joy and huge celebration, everyone knew it was your birthday.  Our birthday trip to your favorite book store, no matter the temperature outside we made that trip every year, of course coffee was also involved on that day.  I miss you so much.  I miss your embrace, when you put your arms around me I felt so safe, now it feels like people don't want to hug me, I don't know why.  I want to be hugged so tight the emptiness is just squeezed out of me.  I want someone to sing Happy Birthday to me on my actual birthday.

I miss you so much handsome man.

take care

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

When will this stop? 
I'm tired.  
I don't know why I'm here, I exist for her, every aspect of my life is for her, that's the best I can do.
I'm alone and empty.  
I'm struggling and I don't know what to do. 
There is no meaning. 
Echoes of nothingness. 
I must sleep. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2016


The day is done.  Another candle to light, a candle you never saw on your own cake.  There were no candles, no cake, the light is gone for me on this day.  Maybe next year.  I miss you handsome man.

take care,

Friday, September 30, 2016


Tried to do something for myself this weekend, epic fail.  It was not what I was expecting.  I will surpass your age on Tuesday, no more teasing ever.  Truly, that stopped 17 months ago.  I'm tired and I'm drowning.  I don't want to do this anymore.  I'm tired of this life without you.  I'm tired of being strong.  I don't want to do this anymore.  My head hurts and I can't breathe.  I'm living for her, I am so tired.  Goodnight my love.

Friday, September 23, 2016


I have to scroll farther and farther to find pictures of you.  You are getting further and further away.  I sit here with tears rolling down my face, silence, not to wake our little girl.  It's passed and now I'm just numb.  I don't care anymore.  I should just close my eyes and sleep.  I am exhausted.  I miss you handsome man.

take care,

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Another wave crashes down

I'm sitting in the parking lot before my shift & I'm just struggling.  I don't know why I'm telling you, I don't know what else to do.  I can't escape, nothing is working, not my book, not music, I'm drowning.  I don't know why.  This is dumb, I'll drown myself in work. Writing helps, it'll be enough I wrote it down. No one needs to know.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

you are not in them

I am so lonely.  I cherish my time with our little girl.  I've learned to be funny and goofy with her.  I was before, but I seemed to always play the straight man to your comedic ways.  I think I've found a balance in that regard.  I miss being your partner in everything.  I miss how you always made me feel beautiful.  I updated our pictures in the living room, you are not in them.  We put our old family pictures on the wall in the dining room, a new place.  You won't be in any future pictures, when she graduates, after a school play, and not in the photos from our twentieth wedding anniversary.  In less than a month I will have surpassed your age, never be able to tease you with old age jokes, even if it was only a 10 month difference. I am so lonely and empty it hurts.
I miss you handsome man and love you still.

take care,

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

too good to be true
lack of sleep makes things worse
need a hug
tomorrow still comes

Sunday, August 28, 2016

even if it's just a little

Tomorrow our little one starts fourth grade, she is growing up to be such a lovely young lady.  We still miss you so much.  Each day comes and goes.  I was told I'm finally learning to accept life without you, it still hurts.  I do think about you every day even if it's just a little, I still wear your ring around my  neck.  I haven't worn my wedding ring for some months now.  I forgot to put it on one morning and I just couldn't bring myself to put it on when I got home.  My wedding ring is a constant reminder of the wife I can no longer be to you, but your ring gives me strength.

I noticed today that I'm still careful not to bump my hand on random objects at work so not to hit my ring, it's not there anymore, just like you're not here anymore.  I know you're in my heart and all that mushy talk, I like to think about it in a different way.  You're in my mind.  When I'm having a tough day I think about choices I should make as if you were watching.  I still want to make you proud, to be the woman you always boasted about.

Are you still proud of me? Am I doing right by our little girl?  All I know is that I'm doing the best I can.  I love you so very very much and I miss you.

take care,

Saturday, August 6, 2016

our promise I'll keep

Tomorrow we fly.  We take a trip you never had the chance to take.  We leave the country and take our first adventure abroad.  Something we tried to do as a couple then as a family of three.  I promise to keep our word, to share this world with our daughter, expose her to countries and cultures & allow her to learn first hand what we only understood from books.  We all live on this planet and can learn from each other.

I miss you so much, I still wish someone understood me like you did.  I say things and I just try to imagine what it sounds like to others.  I miss you so.

love you handsome man

take care

Thursday, July 14, 2016

craving escape of molecules

There are so many thoughts and ideas I just want to share.  I miss our times sipping coffee and talking about the struggles and triumphs of our world.  I so desperately want to have an in depth discussion about ideas and issues in our society today.  I want to talk about books and how they relate to what is going on in our world.  I crave intellectual discussion, yearn to share ideas and thoughts in a respectful and equal atmosphere.  I've been searching, but to no success.  I don't want to be talked down to, like my opinions are child like, I don't want a discussion with a "know-it-all" or with an individual of closed mind.  Am I asking for too much in this life I now have without you?

I wander around my community, in society with all of these thoughts and ideas buzzing in my brain, just waiting to be released, expressed, shared.   Like molecules in a confined space waiting to escape, possibly to even make a difference in their new atmosphere.  I not only want to express my ideas and thoughts on the topics of the day, I also want to hear ideas and opinions of others, to learn, to understand a different view of the same topic.

I miss you handsome man.

take care,

Monday, June 27, 2016

Catch up

We're finally doing things we did before.  I know that doesn't make much sense.  We went to the summer festival in our community, we hadn't done that for quite some time, we didn't go for two years in a row.  We went this year.  Our daughter said something that really resonated with me.  She wants it back.  She wants back the places and experiences we did together as a family, she wants to enjoy those again. It's almost like we're catching up with life, our life; a life of 2 no longer 3.  We've made some new memories and stories we'll tell down the road.  She's struggling with being happy and having a wonderful time and then missing you something fierce and feeling guilty about having fun.  I was there myself not too long ago.  It is getting easier to live each day and not just exist.  I still miss you something terrible and just thinking about it makes me cry.  The tears don't linger as they did, they still come easily.

This summer without you, the year I will catch up and surpass your age, the year I'll never be able to tease you because you'll never be older than me.  I miss teasing you and being teased by you.  You helped me not take life so seriously.  I do my best to be silly with our daughter, she needs that.  I really have taken time to enjoy life and moments with our daughter.  To enjoy life in general.  Truly seeing the beauty of nature, taking time with my Dad.  I am so very grateful I am in a position where I can have a reduced work schedule.  Even in death you're taking care of me.  I spent some quality time with her this weekend.  We were together, just the two of us enjoying each other and enjoying nature.  It was fantastic.  I went back to work today like I'd been on vacation for a week, I even forgot my password.  I was only off for two days.

I love you handsome man.

take care,

Sunday, June 12, 2016

in just 3 hours

Your princess saved me, brought me out.  I don't know if seeing people was what I needed, or if just a little down time did the trick.  I'm happy to be with her again, I can face the rest of the day and as it feels tomorrow looks good.  I might even feel like cooking again.  I love you handsome.

take care,


I'm in a funk, on the brink.  I thought about sitting in the garage, but she filled my mind.  I'm alone, it's hard when I'm by myself.  It's so rare.  I don't want to be around anyone, I just want to be.  I want my mind to be occupied so I don't do this.  Distraction.  I'm at the edge.  I saw your picture unexpectedly, unprepared and I just wept.  I want to reach out to someone, I just don't know who, or what to expect, there is nothing anyone can do.  I don't want to be a burden on others.  Only two I can think of, one is in a huge time crunch and the other has issues going on already.  I don't know what to do.  I'm tired. I love you handsome man and miss you so.

take care.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016


Remember that me I spoke of, the one I'm still working on.  I guess really we are all working on ourselves as we live life on this planet.  I'm working out details and carving out who I am today, the who I have to be without your physical presence.

Before we met I was a decent writer.  When I learned that was your dream I stood back and maybe asked for your assistance in writing a little more than absolutely necessary.  You were by far a much more talented writer than I, and your help was always much appreciated.  I've written some things of great importance over the last few years, things you couldn't help with, your mother's eulogy I wrote & delivered because you were not in a place to do it.  I wrote your obituary, a piece that I am extremely proud of even today.  I  helped our daughter write a brief eulogy she wanted to delivery at your service, a piece of writing from her heart and she delivered it very eloquently in front of dozens of people.

Yesterday I wrote an email to our daughter's school giving my opinion about the closing of the school library and I urged them to reconsider.  Before I sent it off I took some time to truly think about it and let it mull in my thoughts.  I asked for advise & input from those who's opinion I value and from those who have more knowledge in the art of rhetoric and proper grammar.  I am very proud of what I submitted and I think you would be as well.  Time will tell if my efforts prove to be successful.

I found a picture that truly speaks to me in this life I am carving out.

Me and your princess helping each other keep balance. 
Moving forward into the sun and dark clouds ahead. 
Flowers and weeds lining our path. 

I love you handsome man. 

take care, 

Monday, May 30, 2016


I get out of bed for her.
I keep breathing for her.
I go to sleep for her.
I continue this existence.
I can't believe I've gone back to where I was.  That place of empty, the place where I don't sleep or move forward.  I just exist.  It's been 13 months and 20 days, I've moved backward like it was day 20.  When nothing was left to do, to keep me busy.  On day 20 you were closer, my memories were sharper.  Now you're so much farther away.  I'm in a fog, I don't want to sleep yet my body craves it, I just want to sit here and write or distract myself on social media.

The me that lives without you, I've been slowly carving out the detail of that person.  This work in progress is stuck right now and I don't know how to continue.  Maybe I'm scared.  I know I'm tired.  You always understood me, even before I finished expressing my thought.
 I miss you handsome man and I love you so.

take care

Sunday, May 29, 2016

I'm in a funk and having trouble getting out.  The emptiness, the hollow, the dark is back, I just can't.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Just me

The other day I forgot to put my ring on, I didn't realize until I was out the door and down the street.  When I came home I still didn't put it back on.  I haven't put it back on yet.  I've been thinking about it quite a bit.  I still wear your ring around my neck where it dangles near my heart.

If I ever forgot to put my ring on before you were sick, I felt naked and knew something was missing.  You're not missing, you're gone.  If anything, part of me is missing, I'm learning to live life with that missing piece, with that hole in my heart.  Maybe that's why I still wear your ring so close to my heart.  You never took it off, in the shower, asleep, swimming, it was part of you.  Of course you were forced to take it off for medical procedures, but as soon as you were able it was right back on that finger.  The last time you took it off was for the 8 hour full body MRI.  You gave it to me to hold, I put it on a chain and wore it around my neck.  I was ready to give it back to you when you woke up.  You were in so much pain.  That ring never went back on you finger and I still wear it around my neck.  Sometimes I put my own finger through it.

Your Princess is angry, she's angry with all the daughters that have fathers, with me because I had you for more than eight years, because I was there at the last moments of your life, because I still have my Dad.

I'm doing the best I can.  I've finally realized that our parenting style is very different than my parenting style.  Being part of a team is so much easier than doing this solo.  I'm finally starting to accept that it's OK  I do things differently.  I'm not you and I'm not us, I'm just me.

I love you handsome man, take care.

Monday, May 2, 2016

for me

I did something for me.  

Da mi basia mille

This phrase is for me.  It's from a poem you chose to have read at your funeral, but it's more to me than just words spoken at your memorial.  You included this phrase in a note you wrote to me so many years ago, a note I only just rediscovered.  The day in the hospital when the pain became too much you asked me to read poetry to you.  I love you handsome man. take care.   

Catullus 5

Vivamus, mea Lesbia, atque amemus

Rumoresque senum severiorum

Omnes unius aestimemus assis.

Soles occidere et redire possunt;

Nobis, cum semel occidit brevis lux,

Nox est perpetua una dormienda.

Da mi basia mille, deinde centum,

Dein mille altera, dein secunda centum,

Deinde usque altera mille, deinde centum;

Dein cum milia multa fecerimus

Conturbabimus illa ne sciamus

Aut ne quis malus invidere possit

Cum tantum sciat esse basiorum

-- c. 55 B.C.


May we live, my darling, and may we love,
And may we consider all the gossips of our dour elders,
Worth but a red cent.
The sun may sink and return again,
But for us, whenever our brief light fades,
Night is an unwaking slumber.
Give me a thousand kisses,
Then a hundred,
Then another thousand,
Then yet another hundred,
Then a thousand, and then a hundred, on and on,
And then – when we have made many thousands,
We shall scatter them, lest we know their number,
Or lest someone spiteful should scorn us,

When it is known how great were our kisses.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

the old is gone and this is my new

I just realized I am no longer a wife.  I wear my wedding ring every day & yours around my neck.  The new category I was forced into last year took away my title, my identity as your wife.  More reality.  Harsh reality.  I hate this reality.  No longer wife.  The air has been knocked out of me, here comes the fog.  I will close my eyes now.

love you handsome man.

take care

Monday, April 25, 2016

past tense

He lay in the bed day after day
Unable to survive in May
Lung cancer will pay
   --- written by your princess

Our daughter is 9 and she has vowed to "destroy lung cancer"

I try to be as supportive as I can and encourage her.  I also reassure her that if she changes her mind and does not want be a researcher that's ok.  She also feels like she has to like everything you liked.  She's having trouble in school with a subject that you excelled in, I can see herself beating her self up because she's not doing well and she does not like it.  I've told her it's ok, she doesn't have to like everything Daddy liked.  
As I sit here and read what I just wrote I guess I'm finally starting to use the past tense.  I haven't done that before, it makes me sad and a little ashamed. I suppose subconsciously I'm accepting you are the past and no longer my future.  There is a battle between my soul and the part of my brain that is analytical.  I'm struggling to let go of the pain, but the pain is what helps me remember you so vividly.  It's hard to find a happy medium, it's hard to find a happy anything really.  It's either a great day (usually because I'm busy at work) & not all of my thoughts are of you or it's just a horrendous day and everywhere I look or everything I see reminds me of you.  

Today was different, I would say it was 55% busy/great and 45% grief.  I don't know if that's a good or bad or nothing at all.  Tomorrow is a day off from work and I don't know which way the balance will tip.  

I love you handsome man, and that will never ever be past tense. 

take care, 

Monday, April 18, 2016


Waiting.  We did lots of that my love.  Waiting to hear your name called, the ever privacy compliant Richard S.  We would go back together, wait for the blood draw, wait for the doctor, wait while the promise of your future slowly drips into your system.  We were always together.  Even when I couldn't be there in the same room as your scan I would be there, toward the end I would undress you and help you into those fashionable gowns, and when you were through I would help you dress again.  We would sit and just be together, you were ready to go and waiting for your turn to enter the room with the machine to tell our future.  In the beginning I would be out in the waiting room, you would dress yourself in that sexy gown and I would wait and listen to the quiet of the waiting room.  I still remember that Friday night in May.  We knew it was cancer but didn't know where.  I sat in that room waiting and worrying.  That was just the beginning.  I will be in that same waiting room.

I'm sure you remember in October, waiting in that room.  I was in having a more detailed mammogram because the first showed something unfamiliar.  You were sitting in that waiting room & I could just see the tension and worry in your whole body.  I had results before I came out to see you, I gave you a smile and a nod from the doorway I entered and the relief and tears just flooded your face.  You hugged me so tight & we left that waiting room hand in hand.

Nearly a year later, you had been gone seven months & I did the waiting on my own.  A growth was found on an ovary and it was being monitored.  I went to the same building where you had your treatments and took the elevator up to have an ultrasound.  This would determine if the growth was stable and therefore not a concern or if there was further growth.  I went in that building, I hadn't been in there since I was there with you.  There were no results before I left and there was no you sitting waiting for me to come out.  There was just me taking the elevator down and staring at the oncology office as I exited the building.  All my thoughts were of our little girl.  Relief and tears hit me as I read the electronic notification of the all clear. I did not have to return to that building, to that office on the first floor.

Here I am, you've been gone one year and seven days.  I'll be waiting once again.  I'll go to that waiting room where the machine determined your fate, we waited for 43 hours.  The phone rang on Mothers Day and we had our answer.

I love you handsome man.

take care,

Thursday, April 14, 2016

mere existence
can't breathe
no words
heart pounding

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

hang back

What started as a good day went bad then worse.  I will not finish my scattered story it seems foolish now.  I am so tired and feel like I let a friend down.  I was selfish and did not think of the other.  We are not the only ones who miss you and love you, I didn't even have the courage to ask.  I was thinking about it, but couldn't bring myself to ask how the other was doing with this anniversary and memories it brings.  Not to mention all the added stress I created for the other.  I think I will just lay low & hang back.  My head hurts and I'm so tired. I am sorry.

No one understands me like you, I so miss being understood.  I feel like I'm failing.

I need a hug.

take care

a scattered story to finish soon.

Some things I've realized, just recently.  When you first left this world, just like our little girl it's hard for me to say die or dead.  I did say it in my last post, but yesterday is gone.  As I was saying before I went into Marias mode, I can't do everything I'm so overwhelmed.  At the moment I'm overwhelmed with life, not emotion.  I just can't keep up, I haven't really cooked for nearly ten days.  Some of that is because of work schedule and other is because I don't have the energy to plan.  I'm not a good spur of the moment dinner maker, I'm not a good dinner maker as it is.  When I take the time to sit down and plan what I'm going to make it's kinda fun, I pick recipes, try different things.  I don't have time and I don't make time because I just want to do nothing.  I don't know if I becoming lazy or what.  The laundry is a disaster, I'm just so behind, not to mention the status of my house, it's an absolute mess.

This is what I'm not going to do, I 'm not going to beat myself up about it.  I'm struggling with the house right now, it's always tough when I work 12 hour weekend shifts.  I feel better.  I'm considering a cleaning service, is that a failure on my part? No it's not!  I'm just concerned about finances, I can make it work I just don't want to set myself up to fail with money.  If I just have to do dishes and laundry I would feel so much better & not overwhelmed.  Your princess can definitely help with those tasks as well.  She already knows how to load the dishwasher, I just need to make it more of a habit.  It's not that she's not willingly to do it, I just haven't been cooking or telling her to do it.

Ok, next topic for you my dear, yesterday on our way home from WI, yes we went to WI for ice cream.  It was a great day all in all, well all things considering.  I think I did a much better job of balance yesterday than I did on your birthday.  Christmas and your birthday were extremely difficult.  Easter was no picnic either.  Even though you were not religious those were very hard days for both of us.  Easter you were the one that always came up with the rhyming clue hunt, granted last year I did it and it took us to see you in the hospital and with the help of your Dad she had an Easter egg hunt at the house and even a mini hunt in your hospital room.  It was the very  next day you went into hospice care, I still think of that as the day I killed the hope.  I really shouldn't do that.  I've not mentioned this to our little girl, but she does something similar on her own accord, I did not put the idea in her head with my words or actions.  Please know I am so careful not to let her see me truly struggle as I do.  I'm so tired of everyone telling me it's okay to let her see me cry, I know that and we do cry together sometimes.  We did yesterday, (see what I did there I noticed my Marias coming back so I brought it full circle) we started the day without an alarm clock.  The day before I worked a 12 hour shift and both us stayed up a little later than usual.  She was torn, didn't know if she should stay up until midnight to be awake on the anniversary of your death or just go to sleep.  I told her why don't we just read and see what happens.  She gets so anxious and tells me she's confused and doesn't know what to do, that's when I just make a decision and she feels better.  It makes me wonder if I should not give her choices or options as often as I do.  So we read and we fell asleep with thoughts of Percy Jackson and of you of course.

We had cracklin oat bran for breakfast.  We left the house about 11am and went to your favorite bookstore.  We spent most of the time in the kids section and flashes of your surprise party just haunted me there.  After she made her selections we went across the street for a vanilla latte and vanilla steamer.  That was the drink you made for me the first time we ever laid eyes on each other.  Ojos del mar you would later say.  We found two comfortable chairs tucked in a corner and we read, she from one of her selections & I from my current read.  After a bit we were the only ones there so I felt comfortable enough to read the next chapter of Percy Jackson with out disturbing other customers.

Again we crossed the street and went to a seafood place for lunch, ordered a half dozen oysters to start.  We did get a little sad at the restaurant and she remembered other trips there and pointed out different tables we sat there in the past.  The place was fairly quiet, our waiter was fantastic.  He was humorous and got us both laughing.  I left him a 50% tip and a nice note thanking him and letting him know why we were there.  We finished lunch and we were sitting there thinking about you and I gave her a choice about going home or going on an adventure.  I was not ready to go home.  At first she said she wanted to go home and then I said something like are you sure and she changed her mind.

We got in the car and headed to Stillwater.

more to come.

I love you handsome man.

take care

Monday, April 11, 2016

Blue Checks

Good morning Handsome.  As each second on my watch ticks thoughts of this day last year flood my mind.  I wore my blue checked button up shirt, the same shirt I wore when you asked to be my husband.  A beginning and an ending, alpha and omega.  Today your ladies will go out and visit some of your favorite places.  It feels like you've been gone so very long and yet there are moments when I just can't believe you are dead.  The days keeping coming and nothing ever stops.

For today a trip to your favorite bookstore, coffee, oysters with lunch, soccer, & a game of chess with your princess.

I feel you are drifting away from me as each minute ticks by.  I love you handsome man.

take care,

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Don't want to be here

Why am I here?  I'm waiting for someone.  I don't want to be here.  Yesterday was so good and today is not.  I don't want to be here, yet I made plans yesterday when things were good.  People watching is so painful sometimes.  Old couples holding hands, couples laughing & chatting.  I don't want to be here.  I want to be in our house.  I'm so tired & empty.  I could close my eyes right now.  
I love you handsome
take care

Monday, April 4, 2016


Your Phi Beta Kappa mailing came today.   Your brilliance known by those among us fortunate to have known you is no longer here.  It made me think about a future where S. will no longer have this street and numbers claiming it's residence.  A time when others will use this street and numbers to claim paper and mailings.  That someday will come and those that inhabit this house will know there was once a man named Mr. R.R.S. who was one of the smartest in his realm because this mailer will still come marking your brilliance.  I can't even put words together right now to properly describe it.  You did not search out to be Phi Beta Kappa, if I recall you were nominated by a professor and you were so humbled by the offer and then by the acceptance of your application by this organization.  You were always one of the smartest people in the room, if not the smartest and yet your way with people was so amazing.  You made them feel at ease and gave them their shine time, you never overshadowed or let on how much was truly going on in your mind.  You understood people's limits and never showed it.  This must all sound so arrogant, but you were not.  Your character was far from arrogant, confident yes, but not arrogant.

There was a sales call or something or other for you today, I lied and told them it was the wrong number.  I guess in a way it wasn't a lie, you after all no longer live here, though mail comes with your name on it and more disheartening mail come without your name.  No more Mr. & Mrs. from places that matter.  

Days of late have been better, I'll glance at your picture and I'll be okay.  This sounds so terrible but it's like I don't think of you all the time anymore, as I put this in the forefront of my mind I just feel so guilty.  I do love you so and I miss you so much even still.  I do think of you every day, I just feel like I'm forgetting and I don't want to, but it holds me back, holds me back from what I do not know.  There is nothing, I exist, I exist for our little girl.  She wants to find a cure for lung cancer and she wants to end racism.  I encourage.  I see you in her.  She has a good sense of direction and she has your sense of humor.  She can even make fun of herself to some degree.  Her wit is getting quicker with each day.  She is my favorite person. 

I love you handsome man. 

take care

Sunday, March 27, 2016

light & dark

Time moves forward.  New lives begin on this earth and come to an end.  It is spring, a time of new life coming out of the darkness of winter.  Your life ended in spring and mine became darkness, not how it's suppose to be.  Time cruelly moves forward taking my memories.  Memories of my finger tips caressing your face feeling that soft skin of your cheek and then your rough stubble as my fingers glide down to your chin.  Missing your embrace & resting my head on your chest.

I'm having trouble remembering you before you were sick.  All my memories are of the last 11 months of your life.  I'm trying to remember times of our life before your illness.

There was this one morning we were living in San Diego and I made coffee for us, I forgot to add the coffee, so I made hot water.  We tried again, the second time we forgot to put the carafe under the coffee maker & had coffee all over the counter.  We cleaned up the mess and went out for coffee.  It became a running joke "how many Smiths does it take to make coffee?"

You kept me calm and grounded, I don't know how to do that on my own.  I'm trying, struggling really.  I try to think what would you do or say when I get anxious about things I can't control.

I am so tired, but I don't want to lay in bed and let myself sleep.  This choice is not smart, life is so much more difficult when I'm tired, my thoughts and feelings just bring me down, yet I still choose to sit here.  I would also really like to start running again.  I always feel so good after I run, I think it would be good to have some time to myself.  That's what this is now, time by myself; maybe that's why I choose not to lie in bed.  In our bed our little girl sleeps, she feels closer to you because she sleeps where you slept.

This bed was a circumstance of your illness.  You never got restful sleep in this bed.  Your last week you lived in this house you slept in a chair in our living room. The living room, the room in our house you spent your last days living.  A living room we painted "lettuce alone green" with high gloss purple beams.  You slept in the chair & I on the couch next to you.  Our bed lay empty as you struggled for comfort & sleep.

I will crawl into that bed and close my eyes, it's spring, into the light and out of the dark.

I love you handsome.

take care

Monday, March 21, 2016

Eight thousand seven hundred sixty

It's not the same & obviosly never will be.  I see parents interact & a couple interact with each other, we were so in sync in everything we did.  I miss you so much every day even still.  I'm trying so hard not to loose focus, not to enter that fog.  When I think of this place I think of it has the setting in chapter one of our life.  The introduction took place in Des Moines & December 1, 2001 marked page one, chapter one.

I saw some friends that I haven't seen since our wedding day including the man who interviewed me for a position that shaped my career.  He not only opened the door, but was my mentor as I learned what it meant to perform tasks in a pharmacy.  He transformed those tasks into compassion & opened my eyes to a career where I could live out my passion: to help others.  

All the anticipation of this trip, the excitement of being on vacation has warn off & the emptiness has returned to the forefront.  I'm glad we had the big reunion lunch right after we got here I don't know if I'd be able to do it now. 

The last few weeks have been such a struggle with our little girl.  She thought I had the knowledge & power to save you, but I didn't & I let you died.  She didn't want to go to school, there was even a day she had to leave school.  She had an anxiety attack & I nearly took her to an emergency room.  Some how idea after idea came to me & finally I got her calm.  

I am doing the best I can & making decions with her well being as my goal.  I want to go & pay my respects to my Mom & Gram, but as I lay here with her next to me I don't think that would be a good idea.  

She & I went for a walk today, things were getting a bit much for her.  We were on the sidewalk along a busy street & my mind was racing & I was frightened she would run into the street.  I am so scared of losing her too, that would be the end.

As this first year of this existence without you  comes to an end I'm starting to realize that there is no magic & all will not be whole again.  It seems that society expects me to be "over it" after this first year.  I'm so tired of people telling me the first year is the hardest, like day 366 will be the dawn of a new life.  All I see is dusk.  

I love you handsome man & miss you so much.

take care

Monday, March 7, 2016

take each breath

What happened?  Everything was going so well, I felt like I could conquer the world.  I'm so tired, physically and tired of this world without you.  I have no motivation to do anything.  You know a few weeks ago I was cooking from that fancy French cook book you got me.  I'm just back to this emptiness and selfishness.  It's hard for me to focus.  I gave up on "Lord of the Rings" I just couldn't focus on it.  After work I tried a mystery "The Woman Who Walked in Sunshine" but just couldn't get into it, I don't know if I was just tired from work or if I'm just tired of this existence.

I learned something last week, you changed your mind.  Please know I wasn't giving up on you, I was doing my best to help you, to help you find peace, to help you have moments without pain.  Those decisions weighed so heavily on me.  I know in my heart of hearts those are the decisions that had to be made, they just weren't easy.

Someone asked me what would you say right now?  All I could say to that person is "I don't know" but I've been thinking about that question a great deal.  My gut reaction is you're dead, you're not going to say anything.  In your own words you've just "turned off" and you're gone.  Part of me thinks you would be mad at me because I just can't let go.  I sit here after she's gone to bed and just cry because I ache for you, or I'll be in the shower and just fall against the tile and let the water and fan conceal my grief.

What would you say to me now?  As I sit here and take each breath, feel my blood pulsing through my head, feel my chest pound, I wouldn't want this for you.  If we can't be together then I wouldn't want you to suffer like this.  I love you so much.

take care,

Wednesday, March 2, 2016


A story to share: May 2, 2000.  You made plans we would go out to dinner this evening.  I get home from class and we're ready to go, for some reason I drive us to the restaurant in West Des Moines, Mondos.  I order Chicken Marsala, my favorite dish at our favorite restaurant, you order salad.  This really should have tipped me off.  We talk, we laugh, and enjoy each other like we always do.  We finish our meal and I see the waiter leaving the kitchen with a dessert on his tray that has flames, I distinctly remember asking you if that was a flambe dessert, as it came closer and more in view I then remember telling you, that it must be someone's birthday.  All of sudden the waiter stops at our table with this chocolate dessert, candles, a ring and there you are on one knee telling me something.  I honestly do not remember all that you said, though I'm sure you worked on those words painstakingly.  All I know is that I said yes and there was a ring on my finger, I believe we even got applause from the Tuesday night dinner crowd at Mondos.

We left that restaurant as a couple engaged, I drove, and just drove.  We were headed in the right direction, and we just went.  I drove and I remember not knowing exactly where we were and it didn't matter because we were together.

October 1998: Chicago.  A group of us took a trip and it was wonderful.  You knew before I did.  Starbucks.  Chai tea latte.  kindness. the beginning of our story, a story that started before I even knew it existed.  Boone's strawberry hill.

Walnut Street East.  The Good The Bad The Ugly.  QuickTrip.  Chicken feather snow.  The grotto in winter.  "Damn it Feels Good to Be a Gangsta"  Basketball. Maurice Cheeks.

All these memories flood back to me and it makes me miss you so, but I won't let myself cry, well won't let myself cry too much anyway.  I will stop and my last thought will be the first time we shot pool together and you put a quarter in the jukebox and played our song.

I love you handsome man.

take care.

Monday, February 29, 2016

One in everything

I am so tired and drained.  I think about all the loss our daughter has gone through.  She went to her first funeral when she was three years old when my Mom died.  April 10, 2010.  You left this world five years later.  April 11, 2015.  Moody died a few years ago, it's terrible, but I can't remember what year she died.  Then of course your Mom died February 22, 2014.

You really didn't have time to grieve for her, three months after her death you were diagnosed.  I still remember that night we got that phone call.  You thought it was a sick joke and you were in utter shock.  I remember you telling the person on the phone "here talk to my wife"  and the chaplain on the phone telling me about the car accident that killed your mother.  I did everything I could, so you wouldn't have to.  I remember you really made a connection with this song "Looking for Space" you would sit at this very same spot in this very same chair and listen to that song over and over and over again.  I even gave the eulogy at your Mom's service, which was no easy task.  I don't remember if I ever told you, but my last words to your Mom were not kind.   She started one of her lectures and started to bad mouth you and I told her she couldn't talk to us like that and I hung up the phone. I distinctly remember saying "us" but I was the only one on the phone, I was the only one home.  That was thing, it was alway us even when we were not together, it's how we operated, how we lived, it was our way, I've channeled Mr. Marias again, you'd be so proud.  That phone conversations with your mother was the first time I ever stood up to her like that, usually I would be very meek & try to convince her that the world was not awful, or when she would speak ill of you I would usually just say something like "please don't call him that" or "it couldn't be that bad" but the last time I ever heard her voice I cut her off in mid sentence and told her "you can't talk to us like that" and simply hung up the phone.   A few weeks later much to my surprise we got a huge "Valentine" package from her with gifts for all of us and notes as well.  At that point you two were on good terms and I'll never forget your last phone call with your Mom.  She was heading to Omaha to pick up her new car, she was so excited and you told her you were happy for her and that she deserved her happiness.  We were in the garage heading out somewhere and that was the last time you would ever speak to your Mom.  Hours later our phone would ring and that would be that.

We were both living in this world without our Moms, something I wish we didn't share when our little girl is still so young.  I even gave the eulogy at my own Mom's funeral.  I still remember sitting in the car driving from the funeral home to the church, it was just my Dad and my brother, you were at the house with our little girl.  As we were making arrangements and decisions I asked about the eulogy, and I remember my brother saying he couldn't do it and I know my Dad couldn't, so I did.  The wonderful supportive husband you are, you wrote it for me and I just had to read it.  It was beautiful.  When your Mom died I wrote it and delivered it.  I remember showing it to you beforehand and you really liked it, saying you wouldn't change a thing.  14 months later I wrote your obituary.

When you hurt I hurt.  When there is sorrow in your heart I feel sadness.  When you are joyous I smile.   Our friendship, courtship, and love made us one in everything.

 We relished making each other happy.  Even just little things.  When we were dating in Des Moines I remember going to six different stores to find Cracklin Oat Bran cereal, just because it is your favorite and I wanted to make Christmas morning special.  You, remembering a conversation we had & I told you how I always wanted to learn to play the cello since I was in grade school.  You made that dream a reality with cello & lessons organized for me.

March will be here in a matter of minutes, the beginning of the end.

I love you handsome man, longing for us.

take care,

Sunday, February 28, 2016

I miss you. 


We had quite a day handsome man.  I actually jumped in a frozen lake and it was great. I have to admit I was a little lonely at lunch when we all went out as a big group.  I miss you so much.  In social settings it's hard because I feel like the fifth wheel. Today was a little different, it was not just a bunch of couples socializing it was a good mixed group, yet I was surrounded by all these people and felt so utterly alone.  At least I wasn't plagued by it all day.

During our event today I met an individual who is no longer with his significant other.  This person was so open and honest with me it took me by surprise.  I am not that way as you so very well know.  I'm quiet until you get to know me, but once I really know you I just don't shut up.  This person shared the story and talked about the struggle with depression and finding a support group was so helpful.  Maybe it's because I can be such a listener, it was nice to be able to listen and show kindness.  After the conversation went on for a bit this person realized he was baring his soul to a complete stranger and kind of laughed and said "and how's your life?"  There was a bit of a silent pause and I told him, oh fine and for some reason I paused again and told him I had a similar predicament and that you died in April.   I did not tell him our whole story or any of the details, it was just those simple words "my husband died in April."  He was very kind and said how he just couldn't imagine.  It was just nice to know that I am not the only one struggling.  Of course I know I am not the only widow in the world.

 I struggle with the fact I became a widow at 40, I lost my best friend, my partner, my lover.  I watched half of my world painfully leave my life and now I sit and listen to the other half of my world sleep.  Part of me died with you and it will never ever come back and I live my life for the remaining half of my world.

I love you handsome man.

take care,

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Makes no sense at all.

I still miss you so much.  I don't know I'm just empty.  I constantly think of you, everything I hear or see reminds me of a piece of you or something we experienced.  I heard a conversation about paramedics today and I thought of all those paramedics who transported you back and forth across the street and how you treated each of them with such kindness and friendliness.  I know you were in so much pain, but you asked about their day, you amaze me.

I'm forgetting things, things you said all the time, your humor, but then I'll remember something so vividly.  I try to think about what you would say or do in a certain situation, but I have to remember I'm not you and I wouldn't handle it the same way or say the same things.  I'm definitely not as quick as you are or as funny or have that wonderful gift to make everyone feel at ease.  I am just me, and I don't measure up.

I'm doing my best to focus on others.  Help them see the good in situations or just listen without giving advice, just to be there.  Honestly sometimes I just want to stay in this room and never leave.  Never talk to people, just stay in our house.  I'm sorry, I know I'm not making any sense at all.  I'm just tired of all of this and I don't want to do it anymore.  Maybe I can just turn it all off and pretend not to care.  I've become good at pretending and faking it, maybe I can fool myself.

I love you so handsome man and miss you even more each day.

take care,

Tuesday, February 16, 2016


My bag of tricks is getting empty.  I hope this jumping on the bed and pillow fighting works for a long time to come.  I don't know what words to say when she gets so upset, I don't know what to do, I can't take that pain away from her.   I'm so glad she talks to me and doesn't hold back.  This morning she shared with me that she's had thoughts where she wished it was me that died instead of Dad.  This was not said out of anger or to be hurtful.  She even prefaced the comment that she loves us both equally.  I could tell she was nervous & concerned, but wanted to share something with me, I told her that she could tell me anything and I wouldn't be mad.  I told her that was normal to have those feelings, I was doing my best to make her feel better and safe so she would continue to talk to me and let go of her feelings.  I have no idea if that is normal, I'd imagine it is, but the important part was that she felt better.

She also has a fear of me getting sick & in her words it gets so bad it becomes lung cancer.  She even told me about this whole scenario of me being sick in the hospital, changing rooms, getting worse, changing rooms again and I end up in the same room as you and die in the same room.  I validate her feelings by telling her that is a scary thought, but I'm okay. I saw the doctor in January and everything is fine.  I'm so glad she didn't come to me in November.  I never told you, but in March when you were in the hospital I had an ultrasound and the doctor saw something she wanted to watch.  I kept that from you and it just bothered me.  I never kept anything from you.  It was a wait and see kinda thing.  I didn't even think about it because we had so much going on.  Next month marks a year that you went into the hospital and didn't come home, even though I promised I would bring you home.  It also marks a year since our trip to "Paris" and the Louvre.  I am so sorry I told you "I hope not" when you asked me if this would be your last trip.  I remember it so clearly, getting you into the car from the house it was no easy task, you were in so much pain.  Trying to get you to your chemo treatment.  We were such a good team, we even had a routine for moving you.  Adjusting the seat back, I would lift your leg and bring it in the car, you would slide and I would bring up your other leg then we'd adjust your seat.  I still can't believe I said "I hope not" when you asked if this would be your last trip.  And then you know what I did, I convinced you to go into the hospital.  I still remember you, me, & Aunt Sherry sitting out in that damn waiting room, new pain medication prescriptions, waiting to be called back to start your chemo.  The doctor gave you a choice go to the hospital to get pain under control or go home and try another increase in dose, which would take days to start working, and you chose to go home and try the new dose.  We sat out there and I talked you into going into the hospital for pain control, I thought the IV medication would work so much faster. I promised I would bring you home, because I knew you were afraid this would be your last trip.  You agreed and then you didn't come home.  I am so so sorry.  Please forgive me.  I love you so much even still. I am so sorry.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Here I am

Here I am, I should be asleep, I'm tired, here I am.  I've become immune to your pictures on my wall, right here where I sit when I write to you. As I stare at these photos there is everything up there from comedy, to goofy, pride, love, and a serious scholarly pose.  I see these pictures every day and lots of time I don't give them a second thought.  Maybe that's me just trying to move on, but then I feel so guilty because I don't want to be immune, I don't want to have this life without you, but here I am.

You know I tried to help someone tonight, I really tried.  I believed him, though many in my place would have a cynical view & thought is was a story.  It didn't work out, he didn't believe me, he was upset.  I also worked with some different people over the last few days and just listening to them complaining about every interaction they have with another human being, it was sickening.  The world does not revolve around individuals, humanity is a group effort.  Put yourself in that person's shoes, just the part you know about, never mind the aspects of their life you don't see; an abusive relationship, financial burden, PTSD.  In our line of work people are coming to us because they need something to breathe, to improve their quality of life, to survive.

I miss you so, I really needed to hear your voice tonight, just to tell me it would be OK.  I remember calling you from work and just hearing your voice would help me calm down and stop my trembling hands.

I love you handsome man.
take care,

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Even Gatsby

You'd be so proud of our little girl.  I so wish you were there this morning, well every morning, every minute of every day, but I digress, and not in the Javier meaningful way.  Our little girl comes to me this morning very nervous to tell me her news, it almost seems like she's afraid to tell me or worried about my reaction.  She informs me she not only wants to destroy cancer, but she wants to end racism.  I told her that's wonderful and she would be an excellent advocate to end racism.  Of course that started an entire discussion about the meaning of advocacy, but she was thrilled with my response and proud of herself. Our little girl is always always thinking, even when we don't see it or realize it, it's happening.  We went to this race exhibit a few weeks back, it was an excellent display and gave lots of different information and points of view.  I must admit it really made me think, so much I wish I could have had a conversation with you and talked about the specifics and what it means for the world around us, for our little girl still making her way and forming her foundations of understanding humanity.

On the way to school this morning she and I had this wonderful conversation about the exhibit and she told me what struck her most and I shared with her.  She even went on and told me what she knew about Rosa Parks and what she learned, probably from one of her "Who Was" books.  There is so much of you in our little girl it's absolutely amazing.  She's a thinker and asks lots and lots of questions, I love it and totally encourage her.  She's even come to me and told me she doesn't think she believes in God, her words exactly "where's the evidence?" it's so funny because those are your words in her voice.  Don't worry, you know I would never ever force anything upon her, that's why I have always been so adamant about being her teacher.  I've told her that's fine if she thinks that there is no God, but I want her to have all the knowledge and information.  I shared with you all those years ago about what I thought about belief.  You always said I wasn't a "real" catholic, granted I don't believe in hell, I don't follow every idea of an organization just because a man with a funny hat says I should, I'm not even sure about God any more.  Sometime I still can't believe you laid out your theories and evidence on our 3 day drive home from my Mom's funeral, I wasn't mad or hurt by any means it was just the two of us having a conversation about big topics and ideas, I miss that so much.  It's just now that I think about it six years later it was funny timing is all, maybe it was just what I needed to focus on something bigger than me, you always knew exactly what I needed.  I have to stop, it's been a wonderful morning and I can't sit here and cry.

Last night I challenged the kids in class to not "give something up" for lent, but to do something.  Again she thought about it and thought about it, she decided she's going to spend more time with our pets, my response to her was "even Gatsby?" and she reluctantly said yes even Gatsby, that'll be the challenging part for her.  It was just an idea I gave the kids and she took it so seriously.  As for me I think I will try to stop focusing on the grief that surrounds me, and think about others and what they might be going through.  A task especially difficult at work with high maintenance people.  Though for the first time I didn't feel bitter when I saw an order for a cancer patient.  It was for very high doses of pain medication for a person about 10 years older than you, I remembered what we went through trying to get that under control and increasing dose after dose to just astronomical numbers. That was the first time I was not bitter about those scripts, though this one in particular really hit home.  These past 10 months I've wanted absolutely nothing to do with cancer information, research, or breakthroughs.  I've stop following all cancer sites and even removed information someone thought would be helpful to me.  I've kept this to myself and still encouraged our little girl that she can destroy cancer by going to school and studying.  I know this sounds terrible, but I was so sick of hearing about Jimmy Carter and all the news of him having brain cancer & now he's miraculously cured, I should be happy for him and his family, but all I can think was he is 91 years old, he's raised his kids, he's shown the world he's a good person.  It still pains me to see old couples at work, we would have been a great old couple.  I have to stop.  This is my problem, I think of what I don't have anymore.

I'm not ready to do the lung run again, but I'm really going to try and think about other people.  Though now that I mention running I so miss running.  I always feel so good after I run, it clears my  mind.  I'm not doing the half marathon after all, a decision I made that really bothered me.  Ever since I can remember I've never given up on a challenge, I've not always been successful, but I've always tried.  I think it was a good decision to make, I don't want to set my self up for failure and I don't want to get injured.  It's funny how I have to think about that now, I don't have a back up anymore.  When I sprained my ankle you were here to do what I couldn't.  All those little things I have to think about with everything I do.  I still get silently nervous when I hear a sound and don't know where or what it is.  I'm so grateful for our dogs and the alarm system.   I think I'll pack a bag tonight and run tomorrow.  After work and before I pick up our scholar.  I love you my handsome man.
take care,

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Just nature

I can't believe I'm here again.  When will this end?  I understood your beliefs and I respect them still, that's what is so hard.  I see a beautiful sunrise on our little girl's birthday and I think of you and wonder just maybe, but then I hear your voice expressing your ideas of those beliefs and that beautiful sunrise just becomes nature.  You were never disrespectful and I do not follow the doctrine, for me it's all about acts of kindness, compassion, and how one conducts their life.  Your brilliant mind does not allow me to find you in every day things, yes memories, but in your words you just turned off.  I so wish there was a switch I could just turn on and know you were the one putting my lost coffee cup on the counter or something silly like that.  Our little girl gets a tingling feeling on the back of her neck when she "senses" you're watching, it makes her feel comforted that she is still your princess and I encourage that for her.  I just know how you felt and you didn't believe in such things and I truly respect that and now it haunts me.  Again you were always so respectful to people that have beliefs in a higher power(s) and were glad it was there for those in times of great tragedy and loss.  I don't know where I fall in the category.  We talked  extensively about the topic and shared many similar beliefs.  I need something and I'm not finding it at church, many times that is a place of my deepest despair.  I love you my handsome man.

take care

Saturday, February 6, 2016


I need a hug!  I need to feel loved.  I need to feel like I'm taken care of.  I am alone in this world and I give hugs to my little girl, make her feel loved, and taken care of.  I must be the pillar she needs, I just so wish there was a pillar for me.  You were my pillar and I was yours.

Just when I think I've got this thing beat, when I think I've accepted my new reality, a reality of being alone, fending for myself, when I think I've filled the void with stone so as not to hurt anymore it all crumbles.  I ache.  I'm drowning.  I can't breathe.

When our friendship began all those years ago I remember you sitting in that orange chair as we talked all night, sitting in my apartment.  You rocking back and forth, the hours ticking on, us sharing with each other until dawn.  We talked about all sorts of things, important things, not trivial nonsense.  The topic veered toward fears people have in life.  You were not afraid of death, your greatest fear was being alone.  Here I am living your fear.  We became the best of friends, we knew everything about each other.  Those conversations didn't stop once we got married, we would joke that we would die together as geriatrics, we would die making love and a customized casket would be necessary.  That was our running joke. At one time you shared with me that you would rather  I die first at a ripe old age so I wouldn't have to be alone.  As end of life approached I know you struggled, your greatest fear would be my reality.  Even in the face of death you so desperately wanted to take care of me.

I love you forever
I love you for always
For the rest of my days.

take care,      

Thursday, January 21, 2016

It's winter, it's cold.

You know what I miss a great deal?  Real conversations about important things, like books, ideas, philosophy.  I don't like talking about the weather, it's winter it's cold.  I don't want to discuss the wardrobe choices of celebrities.  I want to talk about books and what makes an author good at what they do.  I want to talk about music and why certain pieces can evoke such an emotional response.  I crave discussion of thought and ideas.  To talk about the abstract, put words together, share ideas.  You, my friend, are always so easy to talk to, you understood every idea I tried to convey and we would sit, drink coffee, discuss real things, and ponder.  I miss you so my handsome man.

take care

Thursday, January 14, 2016


Ok I'm done.  I'm tired of the sadness, I'm tired of the worry.  No more.  I just want to wake up in the morning and live my life.  No more paralysis.  I like to laugh, I want to laugh, I will laugh.  I want to know when the grief stops, well it stops now.  I can't keep doing this.  I'm sure there will be moments, but I really can't take much more, so I'm done.  There will be one more date that will be difficult, but I'm going to do my best to not let it paralyze me, not let it fill me with emptiness.

Last week was just the perfect storm.  Being robbed and learning the most important person in the world to me has moments when she does not want to live, just completely did me in.  I can't let that happen.  I wrote you a letter tonight, the exercise was to help our little girl, but it helped me a great deal.  In the end it did what it was suppose to and helped her too.

I wrote about what your ladies are up to.  I mentioned how we finished Harry Potter and I so wanted to tell you my theory of the story, to have that discussion like we would. I'm doing it again, I'm thinking about you so much tears just come.  I'm either one extreme or the other, I've always been like that, so passionate about something I put everything I am into it or I just let it go and it's gone.  I either think of you all the time and get swallowed by the emptiness or I don't think about you at all, then I feel guilty because I love you so much, even still.  It starts again.

I sit here looking at your pictures above the screen, I remember I'm done.

love you handsome man

take care