He’s been dead 47 days now. As hard as I try, I can’t stop counting the days. In so many ways, I feel like a murderess, caught up in her own betrayals and sentenced to a life sentence. But, it is no crime, nor is there a sentence, for betraying oneself. And, each day you killed off because you could not break free of the entanglements of the heart is only that…a day. Even though each and every one we live is one that we can’t get back any more than we could bring blood-life, again, to one we took.
My mother insists that I should remember his terrible ways. She says that, should I have a good memory of him, to immediately recall a hurtful thing. True, I could to that. I did enough of it while he lived and breathed, after all. But, Mom wasn’t there for the good things…the intimate things a woman only shares with the man she loves. She wasn’t there for Christmas mornings spent hiding with him, camcorder in hand, waiting to hear the first little feet hitting the stairs to come see what Santa left. She wasn’t there to see him flying into the parking lot after a hard day’s work, to catch the last bit of Little League practice, or how he’d tell me to stay in bed as he’d get up to check on the boys if one cried out in the night. She never heard his laugh. Not the one I heard as we’d trade stories of childhood misadventure and awkward first dates. We had some great times together, he and I. They count, too. Just because things didn’t end well with us does not mean that we did not share something amazing once. If I’m going to live with his memory, I want those things to be part of it. I’d honestly love to let the bad things fall to the dirt with him. I can’t, but I’d love to.