Sunday, November 30, 2008

A Horrible Comparison

This is a horrible comparison.
This will make some people think I'm a horrible person and truly losing my marbles.
But trust me, I'm not. At least not horrible. Perhaps a little crazy.
And I will take comfort where I can get it.
Today, I found it in the strangest location.

I just finished "Marley & Me" by John Grogan.
I highly recommend it if you like memiours, you are a pet owner, or just love a good fun read.
I thoroughly enjoyed.
Through a lot of the book, I found myself laughing out loud.
Through the last two chapters, I found myself sobbing.
Sobbing on a two & half hour flight to Orlando in the midst of a full plane load of people.

[Besides my widow friends] In this book, I found a person who could express in words some of the things I was feeling.
Yes, he ends up losing the dog. (I don't think I'm spoiling the ending here.)
I found the author feels similar feelings to me.
He also had to put the dog to sleep and although a very different position, I still felt/feel some similar guilt, heaviness, and/or stress of that type of decision.

I'm not trying to say losing Roger is like losing a pet. But I think, its pretty darn close.
A pet, in the author's case a dog, is like a best friend.
They are there when you arrive home waiting for you.
They love you unconditionally.
They are happy to see you.
They are by your side through thick and thin.
They love you even when you are sick.
They love you when you are looking your absolute worse.
They are fun and sweet.
How is this not like a husband?
Roger was all those things to me.

And I know Roger was more than a dog, but the author's pictures of grief and some other findings fit me.
I want to share a few parts of the book.

"...He reminded me that each of us gets just one shot at the gold, with no replays. One day you are swimming halfway out into the ocean convinced this is the day you will catch that seagull; the next you're barely able to bend down to drink out of your water bowl."
This is the first passage that made me cry.
On Thursday, August 21, 2008, Roger was progamming a new database, running errands, meeting with the renters, playing with the cats, messing with the budget, loading his new iPod, and then the next day he was completely unable to do anything.
He was so full of life. Roger made goals and met goals constantly. He didn't let anything stand in his way.
But one very stupid human driver ended it all. One stupid driver made it so he would never see again. Never talk to me. Never have sex with me. Never feed himself. Never do another martial art. Never be here for me when I needed him most.

"...I could almost taste the finiteness of life and thus its preciousness. We take it for granted, but it is fragile, percarious, uncertain, able to cease at any instant without notice. I was reminded of what should be obvious but too often is not, that each day, each hour and minute, is worth cherishing."
The second sentence here is what really gets me. Roger was strong. He seemed invincible. He seemed like he would live forever.
And I was never given proper notice. He just left. No goodbye conversation. Not one last kiss.
Roger was fragile despite everything he claimed.
Life is uncertain and unplanned which is something Roger repeated to me a lot.
But I never listened. I kept making plans for us for the next day, the next month, the next year, and for the rest of our lives together. And in the end, it was fruitless.

"Little moments hardly worth remembering, and yet here they were, randomly playing out on my mental movie screen at the least likely of times and places. Most of them made me smile; a few made me bite my lip and pause."
This is a constant for me. It never ever stops for me. And the most random memories come at the most random of times. I wish I could document them all. I'm sure most are only things I want to know or remember. But I can't forget.
One of my greatest strengths of remembering almost everything haunts me.
But at the same time, I don't want to forget. I don't want to lose those memories of him, of us, and of everything we had together.

"Despite everything, all the disappointments and unmet expectations, Marley had given us a gift, at once priceless and free. He taught us the art of unqualified love. How to give it, how to accept it. Where there is that, most of the other pieces fall into place."
Roger loved me in all ways. He thought I was sexy and beautiful. He was patient with me and kind. And in a way, he did it without expecting it in return.
Of course, I did return his love with my own. But he put himself out there to me 100% all the time hoping I'd do the same in blind faith.

"The ups, the downs; the laughter, the tears; the joys and the heartbreaks. A journey worth taking."
When I took my vows, I took them very seriously.
I was not going to end up divorced. It was death do us part.
Death was the only thing I would truly let get in our way.
And I knew that eventually one of us would die. It's inevitable. I wasn't denying that life eventually ends.
Of course, never like this.
Never so soon.
But I'd do it all again.
I'd do it a million times over.
I'd deal with all our "discussions" and all the pain of dating.
I would take it all just to have everything we did even for the most shortest of moments.
Just to know that I was loved. Truly loved for me. To give love. To learn that marriage could be fantastic and fulfilling. To learn that I could trust someone completely.

For the rehearsal dinner, the night before our wedding. I almost read this poem to Roger. But ultimately for one reason or another didn't. But here it is. True in every sense.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thankful for...

... Thanksgiving being over.

Thankfully, I am at a place that Roger has never been before.  
There are no direct memories of him here.  
Just the indirect ones.
And how I wish that were enough to just get away from his memory or our memories for a few minutes.
But it doesn't stop.

I felt myself on the edge of breaking down all day yesterday.  
I wanted to cry but felt like I couldn't in front of these people.
How would they react?
How would I react?

It's funny how some people do deal with me.
They just don't mention him.
But I'm not sure if that helps.
It just makes me think of him enough for everyone plus some.

I still get the question of "It's been 3 months. Are you doing better?"
No, I am not!
I just am better at hiding it.
I'm better at putting on makeup and putting my hair together so I look decent.
I'm better at smiling through the pain.
I'm better at laughing but I am still crying when no one is around.

It's been three months today.
Three months is almost unbelievable.
How can that be?
It feels like three years since I have talked to him or held him.
But at the same time has frozen and its only been three days.  

I miss him like a migraine that just can't be cured.
I want him like a homeless person wants a home.
I just want to go back in time.
Wake up from this very bad dream.

He was so real yet almost not.
It's like sitting down in that chair you know is there but someone has moved it.
The "chair" was just there.
Where did it go?
I wouldn't have sat down if it wasn't there.
But its gone.
Someone took it away.
Like a really bad prank.
And the joke is on me.

"Oh, so you thought you had it all?  You thought life was going great.  Well, surprise!!  You are the winner of the shitty end of the stick."

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

One more funny for the road

As I said, Roger and I talked on IM a lot.
In the conversation below there are two facts you need to know. First, Roger's middle name was Jesus (Spanish pronunciation of course). And Star is my middle name and my first name is one of the four seasons.

July 11, 2008
Roger J: this guy I am working with his name is Vishnu
Roger J: I keep wanting to call him ViNshu .. which is the name of a god
Roger J: not sure if that is a compliment or an insult
Star J: lol
Roger J: actually .. his name is the god
Roger J: Vishnu
Roger J: weird how parents name their kids after gods ....
Roger J: not like my parents did that
Roger J: :-)
Star J: lol
Star J: or a body in the solar system
Roger J: yeah
Roger J: weird
Star J: or a season
Roger J: or both

That conversation makes me smile and giggle everytime. Especially since there was a slight delay between when he says "weird how parents name their kids after gods..." and his next line. I wanted to fall off my chair.

Something funny for the road

Here is another snapshot of my dorky yet wonderful husband.
In the IM conversation below, you will see how much he loved the Hulk. It just makes me smile and makes me laugh with him of course and not at him. Or so I would have told him it was with him if he was still here.

June 11, 2008
Roger J: it is Hulk Week on Sci Fi
Roger J: I lost count on the number of episodes I have
Roger J: seen today that is

June 13, 2008
Roger J: Lou Firgino was HUGE when doing these programs
Star J: who?
Roger J: I think bigger then Schwarzenegger
Star J: doing what programs?
Roger J: the incredible hulk
Star J: oh my
Roger J: only thing I think Schwarzenegger was more cut all around
Roger J: more abs, etc
Roger J: Lou Firigno was Mr Universe a bunch of times.. I think Schwarzenegger took the title from him and kept it for a long time

I think he might have liked the Hulk

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

So here I go...

... into the official holiday season without him.
Our first married holiday season and my first without him.
Except, I'm not married by definition.

I feel like I'm kinda being pushed into this holiday season.
All the stores with their commercials, sales, Christmas music, and holiday decor.
It's like Star is coming with us whether she likes it or not.
It's not like I can skip it although I do wish I could maybe sleep through it.

I'm really nervous about how I will handle it.
Will it be harder than I think? Will it be as hard? Or maybe not so bad?

I hate the word "strong" so I don't even want to hear how "strong" I am.
I hope no one uses that word.
Because to my standards, I'm not.
Crying every day is not strong.
And if I'm crying every regular day, how am I going to handle this Thursday?
I also hope people don't say "You look great considering."
What does that mean? Yes, I've lost weight. But what else? What are they expecting.

How am I going to handle knowing this is not the way Thanksgiving was suppose to be.
We were supposed to be having both our families here.
We were supposed to be marinating a turkey tomorrow night in mojo like the tradition we started.
I am supposed to be planning the sides and the desserts.
And maybe my mom would be here making her deviled eggs.
But no. Not at all.
All of that "plan" has gone away.
None of that will be happening at my house.
My house this year will be empty like my heart.

I will be spending this year with my dear friend Cecilia for which I am very grateful.
I'm so appreciative of everything she has been for me this year.
For about a week, she was me.
She completely took over my life after the accident and right after Roger's death.
It was so amazing and sweet.
I am extremely happy to be spending this first holiday with her.

Roger and I only had two Thanksgivings together.
The very first year we were officially dating, Roger and I spent it apart. He had family visiting for a vow renewal at Disney and I had plans to go to West Florida. But we did talk via text and the phone quite a bit. I even have a picture of Roger sitting on a curb texting and his mom standing next to him. And I'm pretty sure he was texting me. At least I hope so.

By the next we were engaged. Our immediate families met each other for the first time and we spent it in Roger's house. It was stressful yet exciting. And Roger still wanted to marry me at the end of the weekend.

Last year, we were at our house. His mom said the Thanksgiving blessing over the food and also prayed for "pitter patter of feet besides the cats" but of course she said it in Spanish so I wouldn't know. Or so she thought.
We had a whole slew of people here. Roger's cousins, Mike & Maribel, and their four girls stayed with us.
The next day we went to Islands of Adventure and discovered this awesome jungle gym probably designed for very young kids. I think we had to convince Roger it was time to go.
We were only three months away from the wedding. Life was exciting.

But yet here I am.
Packing alone for my first trip without Roger. My first married Thanksgiving alone.
This is also my first trip since the accident.
I'm very nervous about the whole ordeal from beginning to end.
The last time I had to think about packing in this detail was the night before the accident.
And its not like I haven't traveled without Roger. I have travelled a lot without him. But not since the accident. Not like this.

So I leave tomorrow without him.
I will celebrate Thanksgiving without him.
I will be thankful for everything I can be.
Without him.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Karma is a b*tch

Kindergarten is so wrong.
We are told to share our toys in order to be fair, to be nice, and to be a good person.
We are taught that if we are those things, then good things will happen to us.
We are taught that if we will plant good seeds then we will reap the good benefits.
But Karma is involved.
Karma sticks in her ugly head and puts her dirty hands into everything.
And I used to think she was different.
I used to have a completely different impression of her.
I thought she was fair.
I used to believe she gave people what they deserved but now I realize that is not the case.
She doesn't care what kind of seeds you have planted or what good deeds you have done.
No, Karma is a b*tch.
Karma is a real pain the the ass.

It is not the good people of the world that get what they deserve.
Look at me.
I am a good person.
I do good things.
Yet, here I am suffering the worst pain of my life.
Maybe its mental pain which is the best pain you can have because you can escape it supposedly. But for me there is no escape.
There is no place to hide.
I don't deserve this.
This is not fair to me.
This is not fair to his mother.
This is not fair to any of Roger's family.

Last night my broken heart was trampled on.
A marriage that I admired and that I used as an example in my own ended.
But it did not end in divorce.
No, it ended in the same way as mine.
I'm so angry that I have this in common with such a good friend.
How can this be!!
Why her?
Why her children?

She was just here supporting me.
She supported me on my wedding day.
This is not what she deserved.

Where is this fairness we are taught about?
Why isn't Karma punishing those who deserve it?
Why is she punishing the good?

Life is not fair!

Sunday, November 23, 2008


I love communicating via IM (Instant Messaging).
In most of my jobs and for years, I have been able to keep in touch with family and friends that way.
And sometimes with the person in the cube right next door.
It's probably one of my favorite inventions ever.
It's quiet, it's private, and it's just pretty easy and fast.
I have loads of people on my contact lists (yes multiple cause I have multiple kinds of IM-AOL, Yahoo, Google, etc) and most people are never deleted.
Amazingly sometimes people come out of the blue on there, so you just never know.

It was one of the first methods Roger and I started communicating in the very beginning of our relationship. I was online, he was online and after I felt like he could be trusted to have my IM name, we talked pretty much every day that way.
Sometimes even at home. Sad but true. But he would be working in the office on a conference call and I would be in the family room. And sometimes it became a method for us to "discuss" things giving me the written method I needed to think clearly.
And the days we didn't talk on IM, I missed him very much.
I miss it tons now.

So in lieu of not talking to him, I started reading the IM logs that meebo keeps.
It was so nice to read things. I have about 51 days worth dating back to June 3, 2008. Some are super short. And some are sweet. Some even made me cry.
However, I had to force myself to read the "discussions" we had over IM. I can not idolize Roger and make him into a saint. I must realize and remember that we did fight.
And not always effectively.
I had already forgot some things that were so incredibly Roger.
Like "Buh-bye". And "COOLness".
How can I already be forgetting...
And I re-reading them made me miss even more our silly banter.

I will try to share some of them just to show a side to Roger that I don't think a lot of people know.
The one below is particularly special to me because I always wondered if Roger loved "our house" like I loved our house.
When we bought the house, I was jumping up and down for joy. Roger, well, he was cool calm, and collected. He was sick the day we signed the contract and posed with the SOLD sign so again, he didn't seem excited.
Roger told me many times that just because he doesn't show excitement like I do, doesn't mean he isn't excited or isn't happy with something but I guess there were still doubts in my head.
It is apparent in the discussion below.
And somehow when Roger and I had this discussion I missed that key part about our house.
How could I have missed something so important?! Because IM is fast and conversation moves uber fast.
As I read it on Friday, it was really comforting to see it.
Comforting to know he loved this house. "Our" house.
So without further delay and with a little editing to protect us:

June 19, 2008
Star J: i feel so trapped
Roger J: me sorry
Star J: I've gotten us into this cause i wanted the "our" house
Star J: and that's the worst feeling
Roger J: I don't think we did anything wrong
Star J: I've trapped myself into making a certain level income
Roger J: we have talked about the money thing in the past...
Roger J: you cant seem to find anything you would like regardless of the pay
Star J: I'm applying all the time
Star J: i can't find someone who likes me at any pay level
Roger J: I don't think its just you.. and as hard as it is not to, you cant assume its you
Roger J: its like saying nobody likes the old house
Roger J: the market its at the state that nobody is hiring easily
Roger J: the only ones that are hiring our tech jobs cause they help eliminate the other positions
Roger J: and you don't want a tech job
Roger J: but anyways .. my point was simply .. you shouldn't say "I got us into this situation" ... because regardless of if we lived at the old house or the new house.. you would still need to be working
Star J: yeah, but if we were in the old house, i could go work as a pharmacy tech
Star J: and make $30,000 a year
Roger J: I don't know if you can simply assume that...
Roger J: cause now you are saying, we need the money to be comfortable
Roger J: to make minimums
Roger J: but how do you know that we wouldn't be looking at your salary as paying off the wedding or other things
Roger J: even if we were at the old house
Roger J: I guess my point is that our perceptions have changed because we made a lot of changes in a short time
Roger J: so I am suggesting to not second guess are decisions
Roger J: I mean we could say .. if we hadn't had a wedding ... we would be even less in debt
Roger J: but I love the fact we got married.. thus I don't mind the expenses
Roger J: I love the fact we bought the house.. thus I don't mind the extra debt
Roger J: so like I said.. we shouldn't be playing what if games.. we shouldn't second guess our actions
Star J: again, like i said in the beginning of this, you have no idea how it feels here
Roger J: I have some idea...
Roger J: and I know its frustrated that there is little you can do
Star J: not just mildly annoying
Roger J: but I cant do anything, except listen.. and tell you I think it will all work out for the best in the end
Roger J: don't you think its frustrating for me too... that there is nothing I can do to help you.. to see you get frustrated..
Roger J: so all I can do is listen.. and tell you I think it will all work out for the best in the end
Roger: and I truly believe in the end it will all be good

I had such a wonderful husband.
He loved being married to me.
He did love our house.
And it will be good in the end. It will be good in the end...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Painting without him

When I first started this whole "process" of grieving, something or someone suggested painting my interior walls, redecorating, or rearranging furniture to help make my space different especially since I am not leaving the home we shared together.
Well, Roger and I were already planning on painting our house to get rid of the standard lovely sand home builder color. We had mostly decided on colors and it was on the year-two year plan of things to do.
But Roger's death and the suggestion upped the timing.

I had finally decided on a pale yellow for the formal living room and dining room.
And on a whim, because that's really how you should pick paint colors, I decided to paint the arch that divides the room a darker yellow (feather gold per Home Depot).
I started painting today.

And like most things, the whole process brought me back to Roger.
He creeps into almost everything I do at every moment of every day.
So again, why am I surprised?! I am not sure.

Roger and I had painted his master bedroom about eight months into our relationship.
Someone told me when we started that painting a room together was a good test to any relationship.
And it was.
At first, we couldn't really figure out how to work together efficiently. Once we/I figured out that Roger was a better ladder person that me, that became his responsiblity. I took the lower half of the walls and I did a lot of the prepping.
That project tested our patience with each other.
I would just want to get through a particular step when Roger would be ready to take a break. He would say something about eating or going to the bathroom or some other essential bodily function.
But when I was doing a project, I put all those things on the back burner.
But we made it through. We painted the room in a day and a half. We still loved each other and all was good.

Today, I missed my companion. My teammate. The person who told me "Hey, maybe we should eat about now."
And it takes a whole lot longer to do without him.
I also remembered why Roger was the ladder person. I hate being the ladder person.
I hate moving the ladder around the room. I hate mounting and dismounting the thing a million times.

As part of the prepping process, I had to take down our "wedding niche" with our official wedding photograph, some candid shots, our guest signature frame, the basket from our honeymoon, and our unity candle.
Damn unity candle.
We are one. Yeah right.
He left me. He f#*%&ng left me.
What do I do with a damn unity candle now besides throwing it against a wall?

The cats were quite amazed at whatever I was doing to the wall. They watched me with a lot of curiosity. I later found some paw prints of paint across the tiles on the dining room floor.
Of course, that again brought me back to painting with Roger.
I paint barefooted so I can feel when I step in paint. But Roger being the ladder person wore shoes. He liked to track paint around the room too.

I hate painting without him.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The last meal

As I have mentioned previously, I don't really have cravings for specific food much anymore. They are slowly coming back, but, for the most part, eating is an even bigger chore than before all this.
I stand in front of the fridge or the pantry and just stare.
Nothing jumps out at me. I don't want any of these things.
I ask friends for ideas.
And Siobhan is always helpful. For a while I took her PB&J suggestion.
Today I needed a new one.

I just hate going to the grocery store. I feel like its a waste of my money since most of the time things expire before I can eat them.
Plus we went to the grocery store together. A lot. Or Roger would go for me.
I also see the foods he liked and it just makes me want to cry. The gallons of apple juice he drank. Or some weird smoothie thing. Olives. Specific cheeses. Honey smoked turkey. Blue corn chips. I could go on and on.

So today, knowing that I was going to the movies later and I would be eating carbs for dinner, I decided to have some protein for lunch.
I decided to make an egg sandwich.
It's quick. It's easy.
And it was our last meal together.
I quickly remembered this fact as I was preparing it.

Roger's bread was toasted and mine was not.
I had cheese on mine and Roger didn't want any.
He had been running errands and I had just had my hair chemically straightened.
We were both hungry and we didn't have a lot of food in the house.
Neither of us had gone to the grocery store since we were going on vacation.
But the eggs were still good and we could be eating in a matter of minutes.

If I'd only known...
I would have made his favorite recipe of mine - ginger chicken with carrots and green peppers.
He loved it. But it took a while. Probably cause I'm just slow at chopping things and/or I hate touching raw meat.
He said it reminded him of Thai food. Another one of his favorites.
I hadn't made it in months.
And I haven't made it since.

But instead, I did something quick. Something so we could to some chores, pack, and get ready for the next morning.
And as we sat on our respective sides of the couch and ate our dinner, I never in a million years imagined this would be our last.
And especially his last.

Of course they feed him through a tube at the hospital.
A nice protein shake formula.
At least he loved protein shakes.

On his last day, they stopped feeding him.
I understand it was because of the organ donation surgery.
It still bothered me.
I wish I could in some miraculous way given him his ginger chicken at least then.
I knew then it was his last day.
Our last day.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

So weepy

Today I have been so unbelievably weepy.
Or at least I thought it was unbelievably until I spoke to my counselor.
Of course I'm weepy.
It makes perfect sense to her.

For the last few weeks, I've been talking about the changes my life is going to be going through (besides the obvious) and now those changes are starting to take place.
The wheels have been set in motion and there is pretty much no going back.
The ball is rolling down the hill.

First, I am officially unemployed.
It is sweet relief.
I do not have to go back.
I don't have to face those people with their weird glances at me and their weird tone of voice.
I don't have to be observed by others to see how I am doing because I don't think I'm doing much better. Or that I should be at this point in their eyes.
But unfortunately there still isn't a day that I don't cry at some point.
There still isn't a day where I don't want to go back in time.
I'm not better. I don't even think I've truly started by some things I have read.

I don't have to finish the project that had become the thorn in my side.
Bleeding all over the place.
I don't have to continue doing the monotonous task of building order sets over and over again.
I don't have to sit in all day meetings to discuss things we have already discussed a zillion times before and no one is listening to me.
For now, I can just breathe in and breathe out. Just be. Just exisit.
And I, thankfully, have security as well.

Second, I went for a campus tour today at UCF.
Such a dorky thing to do I know but the campus is huge and it was overwhelming. So to avoid that feeling, I did the tour.
Amazingly, my emotions bubbled up. I am still surprised at when and how they show up.
I started thinking about how Roger was there.
How he took classes in these buildings.
How he walked this campus.
Then we went to the UCF Gym.
Thank goodness for sunglasses because I couldn't help but start to tear up. He spent many hours each week at that gym. He loved it there. He loved the martial arts club there. And he spent a lot of time talking to me on the phone as he was parking or walking to Aikido.
The first night I ever visited him at his house he had just left the gym.
Part of me just wanted to run out of the gym and part of me wanted to see exactly where he practiced. To be where he was.

It was also a realization that because of his death, I am now able to do this. I am now able to fulfill my dream of going to school full time. And this was just the beginning of that dream.
And as excited as that is, it is also scary.
It is also because he is not here.
And that makes me hurt.

Thirdly, I gave up my engagement ring and my wedding band to be made into a custom ring. They took it on Friday so my hands have been naked since then. Today I went to see how it will look and to sign off on getting the wax cast made. I saw my rings for the last time as they are now and how they have been. And I started to tear up.
I know I want to wear those diamonds and I know I don't want to wear them the way they are now, but at the same time it was sad.
They were being changed. They will never be the same.
I am not married and now I no longer have a wedding band.
It hurt to give them up.
I remember standing at the exact same spot just barely over two years ago putting the engagement band on for the first time.
At the time, I thought I'd never change it or take it off.

So the changes truly begin.
And I begin again.
For better or worse, I am still here.
I am being changed.
Like a river rock, I am being tumbled and shaped.
And it hurts.
And I cry.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I just went and looked at a blog that I follow of another widow and found this. Whoa is all I can think or say.

Maybe I am normal.


Caution. Caution. Here is an insight into my wacked brain.
I am probably going insane now I think.
Roger would probably just look at me right now and say "You are weird" but here it goes...

Everytime I do laundry, clean my house, or throw things away, I feel like part of Roger is going away.
Not like his memory.
But his DNA.
The actual proof that he existed.
The dried skin. The hair. The fingerprints. The DNA.

I almost get nervous about washing my sheets.
Or wearing a T-shirt cause then it puts my DNA on the shirt instead of his.
And when I vaccuum, I think about how less and less of his germs, hair, and skin are going away.

I think about it when I wipe down something too.
I think about how his fingerprints are no longer going to be on things.

Its like I'm losing small parts of him sort of.
Not to worry, I am still doing these things.
But the thoughts are still there.
They won't go away.
I wonder if one day there will be no proof of him (scientifically) in the house.
If CSI could come in and not find a trace of him.
And all the memories and photos and other items will just be something I could have made up with lots of fancy photoshop and lots of drugs.

Yeah, I'm "normal."

Monday, November 17, 2008

Good ol' charades

Roger and I spent a Saturday night earlier in the summer with our friends Holly and Scott at their condo on the beach.
I was a bit nervous at first since it was the first time we were spending more than a few hours with them.
I mean, we had the beach and the pool, but were we going to be tired of each other? Were they going to get bored of us?
Thankfully this was not a problem.
Thankfully I could count on my husband, of course, for some good laughs.

It started with a game of Cranium once the sun was set and we were all settled in.
Innocent game. Fun times whenever we played previously.
Players get to show off their different talent areas and each talent area has different little games.
We divided up with Holly and Scott against Roger and me.
The game was going well. Roger and I each tried to do different things.
And because he was better at some things than me, we were a good team.

So Roger draws a card and he has to do a charade and I need to guess in 60 seconds what the answer is.
No biggie.
We can do this.

First Roger starts rubbing his stomach.
"Stomach ache?"
He just keeps rubbing.
And I'm... not getting it.
So suddenly I see my husband starting to unbutton his shirt
"Oh my... what the hell is he doing. Why in the world is he undressing in front of our friends. This is not the kind of game we are playing."
Holly and Scott are hysterically laughing as they have seen the answer.
Roger is still unbuttoning his shirt.
Roger has completely unbuttoned his shirt.
He is still rubbing his stomach.
"Oh. My. God."
His stomach is exposed.
He is half naked.
Finally I shout "Washboard Abs?"
Yep. Yep. That is right. That is the answer.
But there's my husband standing with his shirt off.
We all are hysterically laughing at this point.
And Roger was slightly red either from laughing or from embarrassment. And probably the first.
Time had ran way out. But Holly & Scott just couldn't stop Roger.
It was just too funny.

And yes, Roger did have abs.
And he still makes me smile.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Wow that was hard

I knew it would be hard. I knew that I had to be very strong. I had to put on my game face.
I didn't realize it would be that hard.
It hurt.
It stung.
It felt like my heart was being ripped apart.
I missed him so much.
Not only was I single, I am the single girl due to her husband's death.
A very recent death.
A death that was sudden and I was there.

I went to my good friends' wedding this past weekend.
It was a lot of fun and I enjoyed myself, I really did.
They had great music and it was beautiful and just a good time.

It was also a reminder of what I lost.
Of everything I do not have.
And everything everyone else does have.

I forgot my tissues for the ceremony.
As a friend handed me a tissue cause I just couldn't contain my tears, I prayed that no one would touch me. I would not be able to keep it together if someone touched me.
I prayed I wasn't too loud as I sniffled.

And as Sean and Deborah made their vows, I remembered my own.
I remembered Rogers.
Death do us part.

In the reading of Sean and Deborah's ketubah, the last words mentioned appreciating each day that you wake up next to each other.
Those words echoed inside my head over and over again.
Why did we get so little time?
Why do I wake up each morning alone?

As we moved through each step of the wedding, my own wedding played in my head.
I thought about what it would be like with Roger there with me.
What we would be commenting on.
How cute he would be in his yarmulke.
How we would dance the night away together.
We could practice our foxtrot.
I would have a partner for the slow dances that wasn't someone who just felt sorry for "the girl with the dead husband".

Thankfully I did have a great support system there.
And I'm grateful for those who did support me 110%.
But I still feel a stigma of some of my friends.
They don't stand too close.
They don't want to be associated me for too long.
It as if I smell of death.
Perhaps I do.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

I'm a knight

It's (like most things these days) bittersweet.
Starting fall 2009, I will be attending University of Central Florida.
I'm excited.
I know Roger would be proud.
He would be right here pushing me to the finish line.
He was so encouraging of me to make me a better person.
To meet my goals.
And I'm finally doing it.

I will be able to put my shame to rest.
My one life regret of never finishing my bachelors.
Although, I still have lead a great life and had (past tense here) a great career, it is great to be starting over.

I'm trying hard not to feel guilty although sometimes it slips in.
If Roger was still alive, I wouldn't be here.
I would know this excitement and this happiness.
But I also wouldn't know this intense sadness, this intense weight on my shoulders, or this intense pain.

This is my silver lining.
This is not a cause and effect.
I did not wish for this exact situation to occur no matter how badly I wanted to go to school.
This is not my fault for praying for the ability to go to school full time.
I did not make this happen through prayer.
I am making the best of a horrible thing.
This is what Roger would want.
And I know he would be happy for me.
And proud of me.

So "Go Knights!!"
Go me!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Roger changed me

Four years ago, I never thought I would have been married.
I was so scared of it.
It was some unknown territory that I had only heard bad things about.
The examples I had seen, I didn't want any part of.
I could count the good marriages on only one hand.

When I met Roger, he wasn't my type.
I didn't even want to date him at first.

But Roger was patient and Roger was kind.
Roger kept reaching out to me even when I would shut him out.
He didn't give up when I would run away.
He chased me.
He would call me back even after I hung up on him.

Roger made me want to be his wife.
Roger made me want to be married.

On our wedding day, I wasn't nervous about the wedding.
I was nervous about the marriage.
But Roger was so excited about the marriage.
He was excited about days 2-179.
Even though he didn't know there would only be 179 days.

I loved being married to him.
Marriage was fun and happy.
It wasn't the "ball and chain" people tell you.
I didn't give up my friends.
I didn't have to give up my hobbies.
I didn't do those things to Roger either.
I didn't prohibit him.
I didn't want to.
We had forever...

Tonight I was reminded "Star didn't even want to be married till she met Roger."
And it was totally the truth.
And now, I'm so scared of it again.
Will I be so lucky?
Will I find a guy who is patient, kind, good looking, nerdy, active, non-video gamer, handy, sweet, non-cheating, and not fat?

Ugh, I'm scared. I'm changed.
I want my Roger back.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

"You are being too logical"

I wish Roger could have heard that today.
He thought I relied on my emotions too much.
But today I learned, I'm too logical.
Too good at rationalizing things.
Of course, its part of being human.
It is what makes us different from other animals.
Roger would say it is the difference between really smart people and those not so smart people.
And people do say I'm pretty smart.

For example, I think about other driver and his very bald tires.
I think how stupid that is in Florida.
Florida! Of all places!
In August!!
Where it rains every freaking day.
Where he had to have known that he had bad tires when he hydroplaned on a daily basis.
It rained every day the week of the accident.
He was in the wrong lane going to work.
He had to know that road well.
He had to know he needed to be on the other side of the fork way before he swerved.
Why was he being more careful with his bad bald tires?
But instead of letting myself go on, I start to feel sorry for him.
Maybe he didn't have the money for new tires...

Yeah, I'm messed up.
But I do it out of defense.
To protect myself.
Not out of smartness.

Roger would laugh.
I have to stop being so logical and let my emotions (especially anger) come out.
Just let it flow.
Let is all come out.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Such a relief...

Many of you have known I was not happy at my job for quite a while.
And using the "not happy" is one of the most polite ways of putting it.
I've severely hated it for about a year now but I saw no way out.
I felt trapped.
I would sit at my desk and cry at times.
It was not what I wanted out of my career.
I would call Roger with my stress level at the max.
Getting up some mornings to drive the 75 minutes was excrudiating for what I was getting out of the job.

Earlier this year, I jokingly asked Roger if I could just quit.
"Sure. Why not? We will just foreclose on our house, evict the renters, fire the cleaning lady, fire the landscape guy, never go out, never go on vacation, or anything else fun."
"Yes dear."

If it weren't for my friends at work, I would have been completely miserable.
I'm thankful I met them.
I miss them now and I know I'll miss them in the future.
I'm thankful for the contacts.

But today, I am pleased to announce that I will be officially unemployed November 21st.
I will be a SAHM [Stay-at-home-mom] to my kitties until January.
In January, I will start school full time.
This has been another dream of mine to just go full time instead of this work full time/school part time thing I have been doing.

I am nervous, excited, relieved, and everything in one.
This is the silver lining.
This is what I have to say is the good of my "situation."

"You are so weird"

This was a common statement between Roger and me.
He was always doing something abnormal.
He said I was weird too.
Almost on a daily basis.
I think I'm pretty normal. Right? At least I can fool some for a little while.
I'm a good pretender.
The doctor at the hospital said my brain was normal.

Roger just had the weirdest thoughts about things.
Or I'd find him doing things that were just weird.
Like excel spreadsheets for everything under the sun.
Or wanting train the cats to be in the circus.
Or having an unusual obsession for Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Just odd.
But it was one of the reasons I loved him.
Normal can be boring.

He was telling me a story though about another girl he dated.
He said they were driving around in his car.
Which one of the times Roger would normally come up with some weird thoughts and graciously share with his passengers.
So he tells her something about who knows what and I guess it made her angry.
She is so mad and she wants to insult Roger so what does she scream?
"You are so weird!"
At first Roger said he was slightly insulted.
But then he realized in his head "Hey, I like being weird."
He turns to her and says "Thanks!" with his big goofy smile.
This irritated her even more.
He said he just started laughing to himself.

Even before telling me this story but especially after he told me this story, he started smiling all goofy and saying "Thanks" every time I said "You are so weird."
But he knew I was different.
My "You are weird" was out of complete affection.
I loved his weirdness.
It complimented mine.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

"you won't like me when I am angry"

I have a hard time with anger.
Now for sure and before most definitely.
Preface: Here are some little known fact about me. At least I'd like to pretend they are little known.
First, I hate conflict.
Second, I hate when people are angry with me.
Third, the only way to work it out is to talk it out.
Now, I hate to even get to the point of anger.
I'll walk away before I say something I regret.
I am an internal processor.
I don't like to actually talk through my thoughts.

As many people know, one of the stages of grief is anger.
I think this is the most difficult stage for me.
I know this is what happens.
I know this is healthy.
I know this is normal.
But for whatever reason, I can't get myself to be angry with Roger, God, or the other driver.
Why not?
Cause I can't resolve the anger in the ways I'm used to.
I don't know how to resolve anger with people who aren't here.

And honestly parts of me are angry.
I don't understand why this happened to me.
I don't understand why this happened in our lives.
Why Roger?

Roger promised to take care of me.
He made vows to me.
He gave me that savings bond.
But he promised!!

And the other driver...
Well, I actually feel sorry for him.
Yes, I feel sorry for him.
I feel bad that he has to feel the guilt.
That he could possibly loose his job.
I'm sure he is having financial issues as well.
Especially since he couldn't possibly afford tires.
But it is annoying that he was driving in Florida of all states with bald tires.
Effing bald tires.
Not just annoying but angering.
Especially in hurricane season when it rains almost every day.
He had to have known his tires sucked.
He had to have hydroplaned on a daily basis all summer.

And God...
How dare He!
How dare He give Roger to me then take him away.
Why us!!
There are so many people who have done such horrible things and they have a normal life.
Why do I have to suffer?
Why not them?
Why us!

Funny thing though...
It will find its way out.
And usually on the most unexpecting person.
And to those people, I'm sorry... in advance.
I will try to better.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

What a great birthday present

Tonight was the Coldplay concert.
What an amazing concert.
What an amazing birthday gift.
The visual stuff and the music! Ah! Just breath taking.
Every girl knows that a guy that can sing, play guitar, piano, and has an accent. Wow!
I saw them back in March '06 and they were just as great tonight as then.

It was bittersweet however.
I was so excited since I absolutely love them but yet at the same time, I know this night wasn't the night Roger envisioned when he bought the tickets.
Roger should be there with me.
This was part of our plans.

As I was getting ready, I put on some makeup tonight and made myself just a little pretty.
I tried to think of what this night would have looked like had life not taken 180 degree turn.
We would have probably had a quick dinner.
Probably cereal.
Then I would have told Roger, "I'm going to get pretty"
"But you are already pretty"
"Blah , prettier. I gotta make everyone jealous of you and your wife."
Then I would make myself cute.
Cute jeans, cute shoes, and a cute but comfy shirt.

As the first song was played, tears rolled down my face.
I love this band.
I love my husband.
He was a wonderful husband.
What a perfect gift.
I could feel him there with me.
I'm not sure he would have enjoyed it as much as me.
Of course, I'm not sure if most people enjoy it as much as me.
My throat is a little sore from all the screaming and cheering.
But he would have smiled watching me as I turned into a sixteen year old girl.

"I was scared, I was scared
Tired and under prepared
But I wait for it
And if you go, if you go
Leave me down here on my own
And I'll wait for you, yeah
Yeah, how long must you wait for it? Yeah, how long must you pay for it? Yeah, how long must you wait for it?"

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sterotypes strike again

I hate sterotypes.
Racial ones.
Age ones.
Education ones.
Sex ones.
I know they are based on some facts but really people should think just a little more.
Do they really apply 100% of the time.

November 1st was All Saints Day and at church November 2nd was the All Souls Mass.
As weird as it sounds, I was looking forward to this service.
Perhaps I would and did find a little more closure here.

As I have said, it was a really nice service and I am really glad that I went.
I watched as each name was called out and someone rose up to put their person's candle in the sand.
Most of the people were older.
Most of them had their spouse waiting for them back at their seat.
Most of them do not know my story.
Most of them do not know my pain.

Father Charlie gave a great sermon as usual.
I love listening to him.
I feel like he is very empathetic.
He is intelligent and doesn't try to just provoke your emotions.
He is not Father Ed who is my favorite, but he is still wonderful.

My only complaint was his sterotypes.
He talked about how these dead we were there to celebrate were our ancestors.
Roger isn't my ancestor.
He was my today. He was my future. Not my past.
He talked about how we can see our loved ones in our children or our children's childen.
Nope, that's not me either.
He talked about how our loved ones lived on in our children.
Hmm, well as much as Father Ed and Sister Pat pushed us to have children and as much as some people feel its the only thing to do after you get married, that does not apply to Roger and me.

I think this sermon made me cry even harder than I would have.
Seriously, is it that hard to phathom that people die childless and young?
Is it really that unusual?

At Roger's second funeral, the priest talked about how death knows no age.
Death has no age. Absolutely none.
Death doesn't care how old people are.
Death doesn't just happen to old people.

Death has no age.

What to say, what to say

I was thinking the other day if somehow someway Roger came back today, how things might have changed and what I would want to tell him.
Like how would I catch him up to speed.
At first, it seemed like nothing was different.
At least not for me.
It seems my life hasn't progressed but in small things some ways it has.

Then I started thinking of all the things
I'm so wanting to tell him about.
To get his opinion on.

Like how I've finally decided what I want to be when I grow up.
At least for now.
We talked about this a lot and I just could never really decide.
Yes, I realize that at 28 I should probably know this already.
But since March 2007, I've been debating.

I would love to tell him about my first Halloween Horror Nights.
How stupidly scared I was.
How I almost bruised poor Holly's arm.

I would love to complain with him about the alarm the other week and how the police took way too long. And of course he'd laugh at me for wanting to write a nasty-gram.

I would love to talk about why gas prices are coming down.
What he thought it meant.
What he thought of the stock market.

I would love to be excited with him about this election. What it means in the history books. What it was like for others.
How he was going to vote. Although I know we were both in agreement on this one.
What did he think about each of the amendments.

All the new pregnancies going on.
How much of a hard time he would be giving Eddy and Viv.

And of course I'd love somehow to get his opinions on things now that he gone.
What does he think I should do for Christmas?
What does he think I should do for investing?

Tonight, I was thinking also as I drove past once more the place where the other driver lost control of his car, how I wish Roger would have been conscious for like five minutes after the accident.
So we could have our last moments together.
Time to just say I love you and any last words he wanted to say.
Instead I have our last moments as rambling non-important jibberish about the trip we were about to take.

As I have mentioned, I so miss conversing with him.
On all mind levels.
In seriousness and in silliness.
On everything in between.
I miss the days I'd come home from work and he'd follow me around the house cause he wanted to talk to me.
The days when he would meet me at the door to the garage cause he missed me and he wanted to talk to me.

Oh, how I want to talk to him and Roger to talk to me.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

It has only been 2.5 months

But it feels like most people expect me to be done.
Its been 10 weeks. That's like 70 days. 1,680 hours. 100,800 minutes.
That's plenty of time for most things for most people.
But not grieving.
They expect the old me which according to things I've read won't be coming back.
They expect me to be over the grieving process since they are starting to move on.
But even though I'm not crying in front of everyone, doesn't mean I'm done.

Roger was my everyday life.
He wasn't just the guy you saw once a year at special conferences.
He wasn't just the cousin you see once every few months.
He wasn't just the friend you saw once a week.
He was my in and out day to day.

Maybe its my fault for being so strong.
People think they can't let go of holding me up.
But please don't leave me yet.
I still need you all.

Please don't ask me "how are you doing?"
or "How are you?"
Especially in that weird condescending voice.
I hate that weird condescending voice.

The blog "Crash Course Widow" which I read regularly is a lot like me.
She was 27 when her husband died.
He died suddenly in a freak accident.
And they hadn't been together long.
Even about the same time of year.
And our birthdays are a few days apart.
She is three years into widowhood and she's still not 100%.
She considers herself still in the grief process.
She even says year 2 was harder than year 1.

With the holidays quickly approaching, please don't let go of me.
Don't stop the prayers.
Don't stop asking for lunch or dinner.
Don't stop inviting me places even if it is all couples attending.
Try to remember what holidays/ordinary days matter to me.
I still need you.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

"We are Man and Wife"

I always thought I wanted the song "At last" by Etta James as my first dance wedding song.
I waited for years to find a husband.
I did everything I wanted to do before I settled down.
(Well mostly.)
But when my younger sister decided to use that song for her wedding, I knew I could no longer use it.
I was slightly crushed.
So I was on the look out for a new song.
And even though there are a million and one wedding first dance songs, none of the lists I could find were good enough.
They just didn't fit us.
They were too cheesy. Too lovey dovey.
And our other song "Chasing Cars" just wouldn't work as a first dance song.

One day I happened to be stalking my photographer's, Scoobie, website.
He always played cool music in his galleries and then I heard the song.
"We are Man and Wife" by Michelle Featherstone.
It was perfect for us.

Not so perfect were our dancing skills.
I did not want the high school prom reinactment.
So my darling husband said we could take dance lessons.
About six weeks before the wedding we started going.

It was fun.
It was a lot of fun to do together.
We did the class method where you are there with about six other couples.
We danced with various other partners and not just the partner we came with.
I loved looking around the room to see him.
Make eye contact.
Tease him about dancing with some of the other girls.
And in true Roger style, tease me about some of my other dance partners.

After a couple classes, we asked the instructor if we could play our first dance song in the studio.
"No problem. I will give you a few pointers too."
So after class, we put it on with me in my wedding shoes.
I put my hand into his and Roger placed his hand on my shoulder blade.
I looked into Roger's eyes.
This song was so much more perfect than "At last".
We did the foxtrot to it but just slowed it down quite a bit.
The piano music in the song is so great.
Michelle Featherstone's voice is amazing.
It expressed my love and all my thoughts about Roger.

I had to let Roger lead. Which was hard for a control freak like me.
I want to know whats next. It's in the planner in me.
Since we were super cool, we could do several different foxtrot moves.
But Roger was in charge.
And I think he liked to try to trick me.
To try to surprise me with a spin or something.

We practiced Thursday before the wedding in our dining room.
I couldn't help but giggle.
Roger trying to surprise/trick me more.
I also had on my crinoline to try to be more like the real day.
I'm sure it was quite the sight.

On Saturday, February 23, we did it for real.
I giggled through the whole thing.
I kept messing up.
But no one knew.
My dress hid everything.
So of course, I had to give Roger a hard time.
"If you mess up, everyone will know. But I get to hide under the dress."
And I tried really hard to let Roger lead.
Finally we were man and wife.

Roger's Laugh

There are so many parts of Roger that I miss.
Too many to list.
More than words could ever describe.

Recently, his laugh has been in my head.
Not just his regular laugh, but the laugh when he almost couldn't breathe.
When something was so funny that all you hear is the high pitched "hehehehe."

After his death, the first time I heard it was when Holly, Scott, and I went to Halloween Horror Nights.
I know how much he would be making fun of me.
Making fun of how scared I was.
I know that instead of paying attention to what was going on in the haunted houses, he would have been trying to see how scared I was. And then laughing hysterically at me.

He would also laugh like this when I would tickle him.
I loved tickling him.
Probably cause I knew he'd laugh that way.
And it was easy.

When I started laughing uncontrollabling, so would he.
As I mentioned before, he would start.
Even if he didn't quite understand why I was laughing so hard.

Most of his friends and family know this laugh.
It was so Roger.
His face would turn red.
He would probably be a little hunched over.
He would be smiling ear to ear.
His nose would be a scrunched.

In my head, I heard it some this weekend.
I can't remember why exactly.
I think it was probably something on TV.
But I knew he would be laughing with me.

Oh, how I want to laugh with him...

Monday, November 3, 2008

I am a survivor

But why?
Why do I always have to be the survivor.

I survived my childhood.
But everyone does that, right?
Nothing too special about me there.
At least on the surface.
I did turn out pretty normal comparatively.
And I beat most of the statistics against me.

I survived moving to Florida.
Not a big deal either on the surface.
I moved when I was 18 (read: very naive & muy stupida)
I didn't have a job.
I had a crappy boyfriend.
He ended up cheating on me a lot.
We were very poor. Very very poor.
I ate lots of spagetti.
I ate lots of Pollo Tropical for $2.86.
And lots of cookies cause they were 5/$1.
But I survived.

I moved out.
I got a car for free.
I survived the heartache, reviving my credit, and making it in a new state where I knew no one before I moved.

A few years later, I moved to NYC.
If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere.
I survived again.

I moved back to Florida.
I changed jobs.
I met Roger.
And we thrived.

We were doing great.
I felt like I could finally relax.
I was done being the survivor.
My head was above water.
I had been rescued.

But here I am again.
Against my will.
I survived a really bad car accident.
I survived Roger's death.

I am currently surviving widowhood.
But geez, when do I just get to relax?
When can survival mode end?
When can I just be?

"Star was married"

I think that title pretty much sums up this weekend.
The singleness is starting to really set in.
And I don't like it one bit.

I so miss Roger's touch.
Roger's hand holding mine.
Roger's warmth next to me in bed.

Roger's kiss.
He was a good kisser.
And we pretty much always had a 3 kiss per day minimum.
One in the morning, one after getting home in the evening, and before going to sleep.

I miss his hand grabbing onto my leg while he drove.
And just being able to be driven around by him.
I felt safe.
I felt taken care of.

I miss Roger's hugs.
The ones where he'd meet me in the garage after I got home.
Even the ones were I forced him to hug me.
And he would ask me "But why?"

I miss the times where he would grab me.
Tickle me.
Just be silly with me.

It has just been so long since I felt him near me.
Seen him.
Touched him.
Smelled him.

Today was the church service for All Saints Day.
They called out his name and a candle was lit in his memory.
It was odd to be in the church without him.
Its more odd to walk down that aisle again.
Without him sitting right next to me.
Holding pinkies while standing during the various parts of the service.
Seeing him smile at me.

But I'm single.
No longer married.
No longer priveledged to have a constant companion.
No one to hold me.
No one to keep me warm.
And as it gets colder and the world is farther away from summer, I realize how lonely I am.
How unmarried I truly am.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Finally November.

Last night ended the week of anniversaries again for another month.
For which I'm very grateful.
I guess I could not count each one but it would not make me forget.
Last night was a biggie for me though.
Yesterday, two years ago, Roger and I got engaged.
On Roger's most favorite holiday.

That night was such a fun night.
I completely surprised him.
I had autumn scented candles at each handmade foam board owl with a little note for him.
Each note had something to do with the room it was located in with a total of four.
The final note I had sitting with me, thankfully.
I watched him from outside go back and forth through the house.
Wondering "What the hell is he thinking?"
Wondering "What the hell was I thinking?"
I had to be sitting.
I thought I was going to throw up, pass out, or all of the above at the exact time.
This is the reason girls do not propose.

When he finally made it outside and I saw his face coming toward me on the patio, I started to cry.
Roger looks at me and asks "Are you proposing?"
I can't say anything.
I just hand him the note (again, thank God I did that!!).
He starts to cry.
I cry harder.
His very romantic reply: "Sure"
"You can't say 'sure'"
"But 'sure' is a positive answer"
"You can't say that"
His final reply to me "Of course"

With tons of people on bated breath waiting to see what happened, we just sat there letting it all sit in.
He kept saying "Wow"
I told him his sister already knew.
"And she didn't tell me?!?"
We were both just so happy.
It was great.

We went inside and of course I had to call/text a ton of people.
But at the same time, we had to get ready for the trick-or-treaters.
So as I put his wizard make up on him, he asks
"When is the wedding?"
"Dude, I didn't get that far."
Our phones are ringing off the hook.
Lots of texts coming through.
I can tell Roger's head is so big.
He is smiling a lot.
And I'm smiling with him.

Last night, I had many offers to go out and do different things.
But I wanted to be home.
I wanted to greet our trick-or-treaters at our house.
I wanted to remember that night.
Remember how happy we were.
How it was the beginning of such a great thing.
Thankfully two good friends came over to help.
I just did not want to be alone but yet not with a lot of people.

Tomorrow is All Saints Sunday at church.
They will read Roger's name out of their book.
At the funeral, November seemed so far away.
But yet, here it is.
And three more weeks of no holidays or anniversaries.

Here are the notes I wrote to him that night with lots of cheesiness and inside jokes:

"Who who who are you?
You are my best 'just friend'.
You are my cup.
You are my candle.
You are the best boyfriend ever.
I'm totally fallen!
And I just love every part of you.
Find the spot of our first kissing lesson."

"Here is the place where we first kissed.
You 'begged' me to come over for cake, naps, and massages.
I'm so glad I started giving you these kissing lessons.
You make each of my days a little brighter.
Find the next owl where all seven of your pillows normally lay."

"I adore falling asleep next to you.
Every day that I wake with you, my heart is happy.
Lying in your arms with your head next to mine is heaven.
I love you! I love each inch of you.
Find the next owl in your room of study."

"I want to study you and know you better each day.
I'm so happy for the way we met and how you have broken down my walls.
The way you smile, the way you walk, the way you laugh, the way you tease me, the way you say your cheesy lines all make me the most fortunate girl in the world.
I feel so incredibly blessed that we have found each other.
Go get some fresh hair and see what stars you see outside."

"Now that we have formed a foundation, I want to start to build our 'house'.
I want to spend my rainy days and bright sunny days with you.
I want to share our good times and our bad times together.
I choose you.
You are handsome and charming.
You are a good man and love me just the way I am.
I adore you.
I admire you.
I respect you.
I will love you always.
Please marry me and be my husband."