Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A Year

I'm no longer able to measure in mere months...

I have passed each first...although I have surely not conquered them all.  Every year they will rear their ugly faces again.  But perhaps as the years pass they will become less intense...little by little they may slowly a scar that loses it's harsh appearance over time.

In certain ways...I'm glad the year has finally come.  Although I recognized there would be no magical epiphany on the morning of the twenty-sixth...and I was cognizant that I wouldn't be reborn or suddenly awakened...I did hope the passing of a year would bring some relief to my mind.

I had become exhausted by my self imposed timelines and deadlines...and so weary of being a headline.  The calendar year has held so much anticipation and anxiety...I was often unable to catch my breath between dates.  Many times I was overwhelmed by expectations...and my own revelations.

But the passing of calendar days alone will not bring the change I desire in my life.

So I know my healing and growth will go on...just as it has in this last year.  I will remain awake and persistent in facing the loss of Susan without hiding...or running...or trying to keep busy. I will acknowledge my steps forward and accept the tumbles back as I have before...but no longer will I allow circled dates or my definition of time to hold me captive.

Eventually life will once again happen...and without time holding me might be closer than I imagine.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

I Remember

My memories are so full.

I remember a shy, but goofy girl who I met by coincidence.  She had this mischievous smirk and bangs that gave her face a curious kid like look.  She tried impressing me with a silly bar trick that involved a pile of salt and an empty salt shaker. She lied to me about loving to stay up late and enjoying a drink.  Only after I fell for her did I find out she had trouble staying up past eight.

I remember the power she had over me almost instantly...the ability to make me smile bigger than I ever had and feel love like I'd never known.

I remember those nights when we became friends long before we became lovers.  Nights spent talking on the phone, or sitting in the front room of Gilson Court.  Nights where I didn't want to hang up or wished I didn't have to leave her side.  Nights when we got to know each other in ways that few others do.

I remember waking up to her nose pressed into my back...and knowing that my life would forever be changed.

I remember the beginnings of our life together.  Picking that spot of dirt that would grow into a home filled with love.  Then sneaking into our unfinished house late at night because we couldn't wait to get our life started. Walking through those wooden beams and looking at the stars above while we talked about what those framed rooms would one day hold.  Dreaming about a future that was so beautifully about to unfold.

I remember standing at the front of a room in a mansion...nervous and excited because the day had finally come.  Watching her round the corner and seeing my bride for that very first time.  Crying in joy as she walked toward me down the glad she would always be mine.

I remember standing in our room as she first told me about Luke.  Beaming already as she became a Mom for the very first time.

I remember that May day when we were surprised by his early arrival.  Being told by our doctor that it seemed like a great day to get parenthood started.  Sitting in the parking lot together...unable to speak because our dreams were coming true.  Being so close and connected on that May night we became a family.  Just huddling us if no one else existed.

I remember sharing in each of Luke's firsts and the happiness they brought to her face. Watching her ease into the role she was born for...loving him as only she could.

I remember the joy in her eyes that August afternoon as she held her sweet Benny.  The way she loved him and cuddled him.  The special look she had just for him...telling me she finally felt complete.

I remember the way she made both her boys feel like the center of her universe.  Days spent playing and learning...laughing and teaching...being a mother like many had never seen.

I remember kitchen hugs...goodbye and hello kisses...jokes and laughter...good times and bad...and whispers so sweet...but most of all I remember how lucky I was to have her in my life.

I wish that February night never would have happened, but as I've learned you can't always control your story.  And even if I somehow knew in advance how our story would end...and the pain I would eventually have to endure...I would do it all again.  I wouldn't give up a day we had together to escape this sorrow...because a life without her would have been far worse than losing her.

Her love, her heart and her life..I will forever remember...and use as guide for the rest of mine.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

My Reminders

Last week I opened up Luke's backpack frantically looking for his homework.  

The nightly routine had caught up with me...the mad rush to get it all done before bedtime was in full swing...and my nerves were melting down.

Alongside my raised voice...and under his lunchbox...and between his library books...I found something unexpected...something that made my frenzied pace freeze.  

It wasn't the paper I was looking for...but it was something I had been searching for lately...a reminder.  

A reminder of what Susan gave me...the gift of two amazing full of love...and laughter...and their mother.

What happened to Susan is still incomprehensible at times...and what we live through each day is often extraordinarily difficult.

But I do have those two incredible reminders.

And on certain days...even if I'm frustrated...angry...desperate...or boys are just bring that smile back to my face.

Thursday, February 2, 2012


So it's here...February.

For almost a year...this month has held me hostage.  The anticipation of it's arrival and the uncertainty of what it will bring have been circled in my mind like a date on a calendar.  So many days of significance will come and go in the next twenty-nine.

Today I can't stop thinking about those two February days when we were hit by a snowstorm.  Days off from work and free of commitment...just a family of four cuddled up in our home.  Days like those are what make life worth living...laughs and love...kisses and hugs.

In a week's time...I will be arriving at what should be our 9th anniversary.  A day that always reminded me of how lucky I was to find her love.

Within two weeks...I will face Valentine's Day.  Which should be a day for proclaiming our love...but will now always be connected with our first trip to the Emergency Room.  A day where we stayed up all night...her hooked up to sensors and scared out of my mind, but trying hard not to show it.

That day eventually bled into the fifteenth...and we were released...happy and content...assured and guaranteed of many more days to come.

But the next ten days will forever be measured in my mind.  They each hold a memory...a special way she said me...then Luke...and finally Ben.  It was almost like she knew...and she brought us each into her...for a final farewell.

And then it arrives...the day I said my last "I love you."  A kiss on the forehead...twice on the arm...and out the door I went.  Never again to see her smile...hear her laugh...or feel her love.