Forty seven years and six days after we spoke our wedding vows; we were forever parted by death.
In the middle of an August afternoon, my husband laid down for a nap and never woke up.
He is on the “Blue Side of Heaven” now……as Alan Jackson sings…..telling everyone about me and hugging our loved ones who went before. I am sad and guilty and angry and lost. I did CPR until the paramedics arrived….but none of us could save him. I feel sorry for him as there was still so much more we……he…..wanted to do! I am angry because we hadn’t planned on this…..his parents lived well into their 90’s……why couldn’t he????
I feel lost and clueless; unsettled and without an anchor. I have lots of love and reasons for living…..the greatest being our five grandchildren. He wouldn’t have wanted them to have to learn about death so early. And now I have his pictures all over the house and the kids talk about what a great cook he was and I am not! They are worried Santa will leave less presents around the tree since there will be none for Grandpa. They ponder how Santa knows this; does he have a phone number for God? They love having turns sitting in his chair, watching his TV…..and I do too!
It’s been a rough couple of months.
My heart is full and my mind is sad and I want to write it all down. I am alone after so many years with this man….my newspaper man. He was my editor from the day we met working on the college newspaper at Western Michigan University. Now…..here’s a disclaimer everyone……this is the first piece I’ve written since he passed away. He was my editor and cheerleader for almost 50 years….so I don’t have his expertise to literally call on in the other room….or email it to him and ask “whadaya think?”
I save old letters. I re-give letters. I kept the letter my mother-in-law wrote to my husband on his 40th Birthday telling him about the day of his birth……a snowy January day in Chicago. I gave it to him this year on his 70th Birthday to enjoy again.
We kept a copy of the letter my husband wrote to his father the day his Dad turned 96! I just gave that letter to our son last month on his 44th Birthday….five weeks after his dad died.
Now I am again saving letters and cards and messages……wondering how I’ll ever write again….how to write from my broken heart where once everything flowed through seamlessly. I’ve woven love and life and family into my writing ever since I was a kid. I bound everything I wrote…. letters, diaries, essays and observations, notebooks from Marriage Encounter and our travel journals…. into two big binders which I labeled Write From The Start for the earlier years…..and Write From the Heart for the rest.
Continue reading this post on Joan Stommen’s blog, Gramcracker Crumbs