Hi, I know it’s been a long time since I’ve written.
But that’s a good sign, from what I understand. I’m told to take it as a sign that I’m recovering from the tremendous hole I fell into when you died. And I’m also told that I will always feel your loss deeply, the intensity of the pain will lessen, but never really disappear – so far I can attest to the truth of this.
And today’s the anniversary of your death.
It’s been one year since you died on that couch just minutes after I mentioned to Dad that you would not want to die the next day on the boy’s birthday so we would need to talk to the nurse about short term life support. I think you knew you didn’t have the strength left to live for two more days, so you chose to go that day when you had Dad and I at your side. It happened so fast that the Hospice aide thought you’d be with us for a lot longer and told me to wait on calling my brothers and sister.
At 10:32 you died, which I tend to wonder if you planned it? You knew that I like when the clock reads certain times, and 10:32 was one of those times.
I chose to believe that you chose that time as a sign to me that you were truly ready to go.
Many of the last 365 days have been horrible.
Many of them were days that I prayed to die.
Days that I considered ways to make that happen.
Days I wondered if I’d get to feel your hand on my back as you hug me again if I successfully ended my life.
Days when I researched how to write a will so I could be sure that my things would get to the people who would get the most use/joy out of them.
And I really regretted the promises I made to you in your last few minutes.
Then there were the days that I was so angry at the world that I prodded people to find a way to fight with someone so I could get these feelings out of my body.
I think those days were the most painful.
They were the days when I felt most alone in this world.
And I made unhealthy choices to deal with that pain because I didn’t care to keep living so I didn’t care if I was hurting my health.
I drank too much. I took old prescriptions to feel better, and took them too often to numb the world. I didn’t shower, or brush my hair, which has resulted in a sizable bald spot on the back of my head. I worked all day, drank and laid in bed all night.
I moved all my things back to town, but left all my things in boxes so they could be easily moved by whomever handled my things “after”.
I kept your painkillers and looked at them daily knowing that I could just take them all and be done.
But I did make one good decision. I asked for help, and then accepted the help I was given. I started back on antidepressants. I also started on a sleep med, which worked. And I don’t drink much anymore, and rarely take my Xanax.
Your pain killers are still in the house, but more because I forgot they’re there until I sat down to write you this letter.
I will need to find a place where I can safely dispose of them.
I’ve been able to begin being creative again, I’m shooting daily and embroidering. And I’m thinking of picking up painting a little bit to make my embroidery more unique/intriguing.
I still haven’t overcome enough of the depression that I can sit and read a book, but I’m hopeful that I’ll get back there again. Soon.
And I leave the house to do more than grocery shop & check in on Dad. Working from home has been helpful in that because I’m no longer exhausted because of the constant people around me all day – a downfall of being a true introvert.
I cook, not just reheat.
I’ve unpacked a fair amount of my things, and I think I’m ready to start going through the piles of crap I packed that should have been tossed/donated before moving.
I’ve collected a large amount of plants, and am looking to collect even more. Having that life around me everyday is helpful, and the improvement in the air quality in this condo full of man-made materials is palpable (I miss those natural hardwood floors in the old house).
And I think you’re aware that I miss you every single day. I still have those moments when I think about talking to you about something, and then I realize you’re not here to experience these things with me anymore.
But, I believe you’re here. I don’t know the how’s and why’s and in what form, but I believe you’re here with me.
If I’m wrong about that I’ll be sad, but okay.
And those promises? They’re getting easier to keep, most of the time.
I love you and miss you, and I look forward to the day I’m with you again…but I’m not in a rush.