Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Bittersweet 2008

Wow, what a year!
A very messed up 2008. Totally not anything I wanted for me.
I have said it many times, but 2008 was the best and worst year of my life.
I got married and was the happiest wife ever.
We had a wonderful wedding; we were having a wonderful married life.
We were on top of the world.
We had great friends all around us and a great family supporting us.
We had plans for small things and big things and every size in between.
We were enjoying 2008 so much.

And then it all came to a screeching halt on one dark August morning.
Including my life as I knew it.
Roger's life completely.
Our plans.
Our marriage.
Everything was gone.
In a blink of an eye.
Just like the cliche, in a flash, everything changed.

I remember last New Years Eve.
We were so excited.
Our wedding was only a matter of weeks away.
Everyone had got our invitation.
Family and friends were excited.
We talked about it a lot.
Roger had just graduated.
2008 was going to be the best year ever.

And yet here I am today.
And I wish I were more predictable. I wish I knew myself a little better to know how I would be reacting now.
I thought I knew me. But I do not know grief and me.
I kept thinking in the weeks before today that I would be happy to be standing at the last day of 2008. To be staring at the start of a new year. To escape 2008.
Of all the holidays, today would be the best one of them all.
Yeah... sadly, not happening. My mood is not what I expected.
I was a little excited about today before.
Tonight offered me a new year.
A fresh start.
And I am still feel that way in parts of my mind.

But then...
I started thinking/realizing.
At midnight tonight, Roger will not be here with me.
He will not be part of 2009 at all.
He will not see the happenings of 2009.
He will have no idea what 2009 is like.
2009 will be completely Roger-free.
I will be starting a new year off alone without him.
And I do not like it one bit.
And at 11:59, 2008 is over.
The last year Roger was here and a part of will be gone.
It means time is passing.
It means I have to cross over the threshold of 2008/2009 alone.
I will soon be in a year Roger has never seen without him.
2008 is leaving me.
Gone forever.

I feel further and further away from him.
And I just do not like it.
I do not like it one bit.

I want to go back.
I want to do 2008 again.
To have that excitement.
To think I would never be single again.
To think I was about to embark on the best year of my life.

Yet, not me.
Not I.
I am here and terribly single.
Starting a new year without him.
Starting a new life without him.
And as a massage therapist said to me today, a brand spanking new Star as of midnight even if I go into 2009 kicking and screaming against my will.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

My New Favorite Word

My widow friend Candise raved about this book "Love You, Mean It" and since I do not have many friends who have or are experiencing this "journey" as everyone likes to call it (nor do I want others to join me), I asked for it for Christmas.
The book is about four widows who lost their husbands in September 11th.
All the women are 30ish but most of them were recently married.
And my wonderful cousin, Dee, got it for me for Christmas.
I devoured the book in about three days or so.
So I am very thankful to Candise and Dee.
I also recommend this book to anyone who wants to know what it is like for me and others.

The weird thing as I was reading was I kept thinking "how awful for these women to lose their husbands" and "oh my, I can't imagine going through their pain" or "wow, I am glad I am not one of them".
But then, back to reality and I would remember I am like them.
I am experiencing this same pain.
I did lose my husband.
It was a very strange feeling.

But the book taught me a lot.
These women had very similar experiences that I am feeling now.
I am somewhat normal. I could see myself in them.
It also taught me that I am on a decent time table.
I do not need to rush this whole thing. I am not behind schedule. I am not ahead of schedule.
It taught me its okay to be sad.
Those who love me will let me be sad.
Those who love me will not judge me when I am still sad a few months from now.

It also taught me there is hope.
That I will continue to love Roger and a new person at the same time. The heart is a very big place.
I will not lose my love for Roger. I will not lose him at all.
It taught me there are men out there that will love me and accept me with all my "baggage."

The best part I learned was my new favorite word.
As I have noted before and voiced several times, I hate the word "strong" in reference to myself. I know those who use that word do not mean to be offensive but its hard for me to see myself as strong. Almost impossible for me.
I know when I am strong and I know this is not it.
However, I have a new word for me that I like one hundred times better: determined.
In my head, determined fits me better.

I am determined not to let this drown me.
I am determined to survive.
I am determined, partly because I am stubborn, to keep going.

I am determined. Not strong.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Wedding Video

I can not tell you how much I am happy that we got the wedding video. The thought of not having a video really scares me.
We almost did not.
We planned our entire wedding and our budget thinking our wonderful photographer, Scoobie, could capture every moment. And his team did an amazing job and I adore all my pictures.
However, pictures can not capture absolutely everything like Roger's voice, his strut, or his laugh.

And literally ten days before the wedding, I booked a videographer.
My good friend who lives in Africa was part of that decision. There was no way she was going to make it over for the wedding and she was begging me to get a video. Almost pleading.
I, in turn, begged Roger.
And since it looked like we were going to get our tax return early and the refund was better than we expected, he finally said yes.

I booked our videographer over the phone without seeing a sample and went only on a friend's recommendation.
Roger and I met the videographer at the rehearsal the night before the wedding.
He seemed nice. He was very inexpensive and we got a lot for a little.
I was excited.

Mario Inglesia was fantastic. We did not even realize how much he captured. He was not in the way during the wedding day and he got our video back to us quickly.
When I picked up the video from Mario, he said one thing to me that was odd. He included the raw footage and told me to watch it. He left some interviews from the reception out of the final video version because they were a bit explicit.
We sat down one evening and watched our final version of the video.
We were instantly very happy we did so.
For me, there were things I never saw since I was hiding before the ceremony. I did not see everyone who was at the ceremony and it was nice to see them on the video.

I told Roger about Mario's comment and we both knew instantly who had left the explicit messages-Ralph, Roger's cousin.
Ralph was the life of the party at our reception.
Ralph always speaks his mind and at times can be a little vulgar.
All in good fun of course.
We had no idea what he could have said exactly but we waited to watch the raw footage.

And we waited.
And we waited.
Until today, I finally watched the raw footage in honor of being the four month anniversary of Roger's death.
The very minute I heard Roger's voice, my heart lept without me doing anything. I instantly could remember him in new ways.
Tears started streaming down my face.
Man, I miss him so so so much. I miss hearing his voice on the phone or at home.
It was great to see Roger smiling before the ceremony while talking with his guys.
To see him in his tux with tails that he wanted so badly.
To see him enjoying his wedding cake ("Man, that's good cake. It aint got nothing on Publix.")

It was really nice to see everything again.
To see how much fun we had.
What a wonderful day it was.
I cried, I laughed. I cried and laughed at the same time.
As I watched, I remembered how it felt when he touched me.
I remembered how it felt to slip my hand into his.
I remembered how it felt to hold his hand while he was wearing his wedding band for the first time.

The words "to death to you part" and "all the days of your lives" kept echoing inside my head.
I would have never guessed "death" would part us so soon.
Who would have known how limited those "days" would be.

I wish Roger would have been miked the whole night. I wish I could hear all his words.
To remember absolutely everything we said to each other all night long. To have a permanent recording.

I can not imagine not having this video.
Thank you dear for agreeing to have this done since its all I have left of your voice, your laugh, your lips gently turning into a smile, your strutting around, our dancing, and your attempt at dancing the rest of the night.

And what did Ralph say in the interview with the videographer?
"Fuck, fuck a lot. I'm serious, it helps everything."
And when Ralph got with Lipps, "Fornicate, fornicate a lot."
Lovely guys, I promise.

Giggle Box

I used to have this really annoying habit. Or at least my friend Sean was really annoyed with it and maybe some others but Sean was the most vocal.
I used to giggle to myself. A lot.
The annoying part was I usually would not tell people what I was giggling at because when I did it was never funny enough or funny at all to be laughed at. People would just stare at me like I was insane.
These giggles would come from my ever-racing thoughts that always filled my head (the thoughts still do).
Some people would beg me to tell them and sometimes I would but most of them time, probably 99 times out of 100, I would not tell people.
I just did not want to see their faces looking at me.
And most people would wonder how in the world I got to that particular thought to make me laugh. Especially if to them it seemed really far off from current topic.
Of course, these very funny thoughts made perfect sense to me.
I could trace the thought along the course of the conversation or whatever I was doing or what I was looking at.

When I first started dating Roger, he demanded to know what I was giggling at.
Of course, I refused like normal.
And like Roger, he persisted to know.
So we finally came to a compromise, I had to tell Roger every time I giggled what exactly I was giggling at. No matter how strange or how unfunny it was to him.
However, I had one "get out of jail free" card each day. I could use it at anytime I wanted.
If I did not use it however, I could not roll over to the next day.
Roger said this way he could get to know me better.
This was the beginning of his degree in Star-ology.

It became a fun little game.
Some mornings I used it right away and sometimes I saved it all day.
And Roger would always ask me, "Are you sure you want to use your free one now?"
Sometimes he would beg me not to use it. He would threaten to take away my "get out of jail free" card.
Sometimes I listened to him, but a lot of the time my stubbornness came into play.
Besides giggling, Roger also started making me tell him why I was smirking or smiling coyly.

And now, I rarely giggle to myself.
Sean should thank him for that.
I am not sure if I just stopped giggling out loud or I just started telling people my thoughts.
And it did help Roger understand me.
For better, for worse, he knew my whacked thoughts and sense of humor.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Shadow of the Day

Well, Christmas came and went.
And thankfully it is over. Oh my, I am so beyond thankful it is over.
I am thankful for all those who helped distract me on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
I actually made it through, I think.
Or at least it seemed that way.

I wonder what next Christmas will be like.
Will it be worse?
Will the reality of the loss truly be there?

However, on the twenty-sixth, I felt worse than on the two days prior.
Maybe because it was over?
Maybe because I was so well destracted?
Maybe the crash back to reality?

And today, I feel even a little more worse.
Today I am back home and I just want to sit on my sofa and watch mindless TV.
I want to pet my cats and be alone.
I do not want to wear real clothes and I do not want to look pretty.
I just want to sit and cry.
I want to hide.

The worst part of today and yesterday was the wacked and disturbing dream I had last night.
I dreamt that Roger was alive and well in present time.
I had got fired from my job for some reason.
We were standing facing each other discussing how we were going to handle it.
Roger was being super supportive.
He said maybe it was time for us to move.
Then we laid down together to snuggle so he could comfort me.
The weird/wacked/disturbing part is we were suddenly in the actual bed I was sleeping in which happened to be a twin bed.
I suddenly felt very crowded.
I felt his very hot body heat.
I felt him holding me.
I woke up in a panic at 5:49 am.

I hate dreaming Roger is actually alive.
It is the worst feeling ever.
It scares me beyond belief.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Denial again?

I swear I thought I was over this stage.
The denial stage.
Or at least in control of it.
But I seriously cannot stop thinking that I'm just not spending Christmas with Roger for some other weird reason besides his death.
Maybe he is in a different country.
Maybe he had to work.
Maybe he was sick and could not travel.
Maybe he just did not want to come to the cold weather.
Maybe he just wanted to spend the holiday with his family without me.
Maybe we are fighting.

Part of that super protective part of me is not letting me truly deal with this complete loss.
And I do want to.
I really want to deal with this.
I do not want it to be later when it will be more painful.
I keep yelling at myself, "C'mon, Star, face it!! Let your guard down. This is real."

Maybe because I'm around people I have not seen in a while?
Maybe because I am excited to see new people?

As long as I am being distracted, whether that is good or bad, I keep forgetting the real reason Roger is not with me.
Roger is dead.
And it is distrubing me that I am denying everything, again.
I do not want to forget.

Of couse, the constant reminders of something to do with Roger are there.
Whether its a movie, a CD, a word on a book, a t-shirt, a sound, or just about anything.
I complete amaze myself at my ability to associate anything and everything to Roger.

I seriously kind of hope I crash back to reality soon.
I am worried about myself.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


One of the million things I miss is the comfort.
The absolute comfort of knowing someone so well that you can be complete self.
I miss knowing what he was thinking and having someone who knows what I am thinking.
Someone who understand why I think the thoughts I think. How I came to whatever conclusion I may get to.
Someone who understands my wacked sense of humor.
Someone who thinks I'm perfect just for him.
Someone who wants to have a degree in "Star"-ology.

I miss the ability to just cuddle with someone with just absolute comfortability.
Just snuggle up with them when the day is over.
Or when the day is just beginning.
The warmth of someone who just holds you on perfect days and not so perfect days.

I miss being my absolute self.
And in a funny sense, I miss being absolutely comfortable with someone that even if you fart, it's okay.
If you need to pick your nose, it's okay.
If you are just you, it's okay.
It's better than okay, it's exactly why they love you.

I miss being comfortable.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Two Anniversaries

I really hate it.
I wish there was just one.
But no, I have two days.
Today is the four month anniversary of the accident.
And then in six days, the anniversary of Roger's death.
Then throw in the mix of our anniversary on the twenty-third.
Sad/angry, then more sad, ending with depression.
Repeat each month.

It just sucks.
Sometimes I wish the accident and the death were on the same day. Two birds, one stone.
But then I think about those last days.
How people were able to come see him while he was still technically alive. And for those people, they needed that time. But I hated seeing him unconscious. I kept looking for some sign that he was going to wake up and be normal.
Those last days, I was able to hold his warm hands on Thursday, the twenty-eighth when they had been so cold all week.
How I saw my support system.
I saw how much people loved Roger.
I saw how much people loved me.
And how much they loved us.
So many people from every corner of our lives.

Maybe it gave me a chance to ease into this whole new life.
Maybe it gave me just a few days to prepare my heart.
But was I ever truly prepared?
Could I ever prepared in six days?
Was it better to see him in a coma?

But I hated the control I was suddenly given.
I hated being at the head of it all.
And last forty-eight hours of knowing that my husband was going to die. It was up to me to choose the final day and time.
I prayed in those last forty-eight hours that Roger would make the decision for me.
I prayed I would not have to watch him take his last breaths but at the same time part of me wanted to be there.
Part of me didn't want to leave him there at all. I just wanted to wrap him up and take him home.
To our home.
Our safe and loving home.

But why two days of Roger's demise for me to think of each month as they roll around.
Will I ever simply go by the twenty-second, twenty-third, or twenty-eighth of each month?
Will they ever just be days?


My New Right Hand Ring

It is finally finished.
Myy Christmas present to myself from Roger and me is now on my right hand.

As I mentioned, I took my engagement ring and combined it with my wedding band into one ring. It is beautiful. I absolutely love it. It has a high setting with the wedding band diamonds surrounding it with some sapphires.
I'm so happy to have my diamond back on my hand and be able to see Roger's gift to me from two years ago.

The funny/awkward thing was when I was walking into the jewelry store.
It seems after my meltdown, I'm quite well known.
As I walked in the store, the custom jewelry people started searching for my ring.
The lady that has been helping me suddenly stopped helping her current customer and went over to help me.
Either, they all feel sorry for me, I've made quite an impression, or I've just been coming way too much.

But I love it. I will always have it. I will be able to wear it everyday my life.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Stupid Jerk

On top of my current extremely fragile state or perhaps it is what is putting me over the top, I will have to go to court to see the other driver.
I got a call from the homicide investigator yesterday.
The other driver has hired an attorney.
And he wants to go to court.
And since I was a passenger aka a witness, I have to go to court as well.
Great. Just great.

What is there to prove? Not to mention the two police officers who saw the accident happen and will be subpoenaed to testify against him.
He had bald tires in Florida summer in the middle of a tropical storm.
He was on his way to work and completely was in the wrong lane of the fork in the road when he decided to change lanes illegally.
Wasn't this his normal route to work?
How could he have not known about the fork in the road and which lane he was suppose to be in?
Why was he driving in a tropical storm with bald tires?
Why was he driving in Florida with those tires?
Why was he driving at all with those tires?
It was raining all week. This could not have been the first or even probably the twentieth time he had hydroplaned with his tires.
This was the summer time where it rains everyday in Florida.
And looking at his tires (pictured above) I would say he even hydroplaned the previous summer.

The worst part is my memory.
Currently, I do not remember this asshole's face.
I remember his body. I remember his animal control officer uniform. I remember his car.
But due to everything else that was going on I do not remember his face.
And he lives on the east side of town or at least his wife's address is in the east side. Of course that is the same side as me.
And once I see his face again, I won't forget it.
I will always remember this jerk as the guy who killed my husband because of his own stupidity.

Ugh... what a fucking asshole.

Wedding Nightmares

... Still. But seriously, shouldn't they be done by now? Like way way done.

During my sixteen month engagement, I had many wedding nightmares.
They varied from accidentally telling my vendors the wrong date, to being out of town on my wedding day, and from not being able to find my shoes, to not remember it was my wedding day.
The nightmares were annoying but nothing unmanageable.

The funny thing was the wedding nightmares after the wedding.
The actual wedding went perfectly. No major hitches and everything just flowed so smoothly.
It was almost like a dream wedding. Roger and I were thrilled.
I felt all our hard work had paid off. I patted myself on the back.
But yet, I still had wedding nightmares. And the funny thing was they were dreams that our actual wedding had not occurred. I mean, how could we have had the perfect wedding? It must have been a dream.
Obviously, the real wedding was fake and the nightmares were real.
Even Roger was having post-wedding nightmares.
It was craziness.

And now they have started again!?!
Well, at 5:30am yesterday, I woke up in a cold sweat.
I had a new wedding nightmare.
And this one was even a little different.
In this nightmare, my mother was forcing me to get remarried.
The groom I had never met but my mom had arranged the marriage and the wedding.
My mom tells me he is an Englishmen and we were in London to get married.
She had picked out my dress which I had on and all the people helping I did not know. My bridesmaids were strangers.
My hair had been braided down my back.
As I started to walk down the aisle, I started to run away. I pulled my hair out of the braid and started yelling, "I can't do this."
Then I woke up.

Really? Still? Or are these considered a new set.
Ugh. I guess I'm a little nervous about Mr. New Husband where ever he may be.
Ugh, the thought completely overwhelms me.
Which I guess is showing in my unconsciousness.

So Fragile

My doctor today told me several things:
1. Stop setting such high expectations for yourself
2. Don't stop taking the medication
3. Stop being so hard on yourself
4. Let yourself feel what you feel
5. Stop doing push ups since they hurt your wrist.

But I just can't help it. Any of these things.
And the expectations just run in my blood. They are my driving force in all parts of my life.
I'm always pushing myself harder and harder.
The bar is always higher than the day before. I can not lower it no matter what. I have to be better than other people.
But I have to remember to let myself have down time. This week I actually felt some guilt (inflicted by me) for not doing anything for a whole day.
But why? I don't know.
Although I do have lots of people that wonder and ask "What the hell do you do all day?"
I just want to tell them death business, school business, quitting my job business, and grief business.
And all these things are taxing.

I hate taking medications. It comes from years of working in healthcare.
Plus with my family history, I don't want to be addicted to a medication but I guess I need to realize that I need them. That at this point in my life, they are necessary and its okay to take some medication.
(See its not just Eastern medicine that I avoid.)

I have to stop pretending I am okay.
I have to let myself cry more. And let people see me cry.
I just think people get really uncomfortable to see me cry. And I don't want to be the source of uncomfortableness.
I want to be liked.
I want people to want to be around me. Because I like being around people. They are wonderful distractions.
I have to let myself feel what I feel. And I have to let those feelings out.

And yeah, so doing push ups are out.
It really hurts to do them and so what should I do, not do push ups. Keep stretching my wrist but strengthening my wrist in this manner, not the best.

I just feel so so fragile.
I do not do well with this feeling.
I feel helpless.
I do not do well with this feeling either.

Oh please help me, everyone.
This is going to be a really long road.

Friday, December 19, 2008

I Just Wish...

There was something I could do to bring him back.

Something to ease the pain.

Something that would make everything normal.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Motorcycle Also

As with most people, I have lots of goals.
Usually they are normal things like get a bachelors degree but it also includes things like skydiving (accomplished 2001), visit Europe before turning 25 (2002, 2004, 2005), start the new year before all my friends (2004), and of course learn how to drive a motorcycle.

In June 2005, I moved back to Orlando.
With the encouragement of my friend Sean, I started researching where and how to learn how to drive a motorcycle.
Once Roger and I started dating that fall, I shared this goal with him.
And he was game. Roger always loved to learned new things so this was very cool with him.
And really, what guy does not want to know how to drive a motorcycle?

Before the Florida summer got into full swing, Roger and I signed up for the Harley Davidson class in May 2006. I was excited. Roger seemed sort of nonchalant and calm like always.
We both did our pre-class homework and then compared answers.
We were set.

We showed up that Friday night, did our first classroom session, and Roger only got one wrong.
Of course, he rubbed it in even though I only missed two.
The next day was the first day of actual riding and Roger never truly knowing right from left, kept messing up.
The teachers were not impressed and actually slightly annoyed but I couldn't help but laugh and try to pretend I did not know him.
The following day as we tested, Roger was number one in the class doing better than the guy who had been riding for twenty years.
He was stoked.
His ego was on cloud nine.
And I could mark off one of my goals as done.

Tonight as I took pictures of Roger's bike as I am getting ready to sell it, I couldn't but remember that weekend.
Or the day we bought the motorcycle when we were just browsing.
Or the day he ran out of gas about a mile from the house and he walked it home.
It brings tears to my eyes to sell it but I also know it will just sit in my garage otherwise.

And as I rolled it out to take some pictures, a felt a dragger in my heart is I thought if Roger was going to get hurt, it would have been on that bike, not in his car.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Moment

I remember the look.
It was the moment I knew that Roger was totally falling for me.
I didn't say anything at the time.
I just smiled.
But I just knew. He was smitten.

It was very early on in our relationship.
Roger had bought a media stand for his living room and asked me to be his lovely assistant for the job of putting it together.
"Sure. Where are the directions?"
"Hmm, I don't know. They are probably still in the box" as he was sorting the various pieces of wood.
I grabbed the directions and started reading.
I helped him sort the pieces according to order they were needed.
I could tell he was already slightly impressed.
I was scoring some points.

As we got to work putting down the foundation, both for the media stand and our relationship, I looked over to Roger and our eyes met.
I gently smiled and he smiled back.
And there it was in his eyes.
The moment.
It was the moment that I knew he was falling for me.
The moment I knew we worked well together.
The moment when I knew I wanted to keep working on whatever project came our way together.

I miss our moments.
All of them.
Even the bad ones.

If I die...

I guess after facing the fact that death knows no age, suddenly your whole thought process changes.
Actually, I don't "guesss", I know this occurs.
Death is no longer an old person thing.
It is no longer a thing you can truly predict or prepare for.

This fact intrudes almost all my thoughts about all sorts of things.
If you go back to my death list, I have started updating this on a regular basis.
For the last couple of days, I have been getting nervous that it was slightly out of date.
And nothing really that important is out of date. Just small things.
I also want to get my advance directive signed and it makes me nervous that it isn't.
And in case it is ever a question, I do not want to be kept alive just for the sake of breathing.
To those who will be charge of that part of my life/death, please consider my quality of life and the statistics of me recovering to something somewhat normal.

My thoughts about my friends are also a bit messed up.
I think about "what if this person dies, how will I deal with it?"
Or the person who helps me with my finances?
Or those who help me with something else, who will help me if they pass away?

I feel myself pulling away from some people who are know are older and may pass away soon.
Or if I feel someone is unhealthy.
It's like my brain does an algorhythm about people's potential life span and figures out how close I can emotionally afford to be with them.
Healthy? Cool, I'll be your friend. Not so healthy? Hmm, I just don't want to deal with the pain of losing another person.
Of course, that's not fair since Roger was super healthy.

Then there is my house.
I wonder what people would do with my stuff.
What would they keep?
What would they save?
What would they throw out?
Would they understand my stuff and why it was important to me?
Who are "they" anyway?
Who would take my cats?
Who would love my cats the way I love my cats?

Then one of the more weird thoughts while shopping, "If I die tomorrow, will this purchase be a waste?"
For example, the other day I heard a lady on TV saying to save time, she buys things in bulk.
So when she buys tampons, she buys enough for six months.
And that's cool, except what if I die tomorrow. That money (yes, all $20) could be given to my beneficiaries.
So I do not buy six boxes of tampons only two.

I keep telling myself that all these thoughts are normal.
At least I keep praying they will wane and I will have somewhat regular Star thoughts at some point in the future.

I keep hearing Roger say, "You are so weird."
Yes dear, I know.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Five Things I Hate About You

Since Roger's death he has become a saint.
I am starting to forget the things I hated about Roger.
Many of the things I found annoying we had worked through, I got over, or Roger was getting better at.
But here are five things I did hate.

1. Leaving food out on the counter
Roger worked from home a lot which was great although I was secretly and non-secretly jealous. When he made his lunch, he would forget to put things away.
And sometimes these things were perishable and they would just have to be thrown away. It was super annoying and wasteful.

2. Jimmy Legs
I admit I am not the nicest person in the middle of the night. I'm not even the second nicest. I am pretty mean actually. I just do not like to be wake up in the middle of the night and I really do not remember being very mean in the morning.
But if Roger had not exercised recently, his legs would jerk in the middle of the night.
Of course, they would shake the whole bed. And of course, they would wake me up. And of coursee, I would be grumpy.

3. Not answering IM
Roger and I started out truely as friends. We talked on IM every day. And it was through IM that I became so attached to him.
Sometimes though, Roger would sign on to IM but then not answer me.
Or he would not sign in at all. He would say he was doing this weird thing called work or some like that.
I told him he should multi-task.
The thing is I would think of things I needed to tell him or wanted to discuss with him while I was at work. Maybe it was a sign that my job was not stimulating me enough.
Or maybe it was just when my brain processed those things.

4. Listening to electronica in the car.
Really? Is this really music? I really don't get it. They repeat the same five words (sometimes even less) over and over and suddenly its a song. I guess its fine in a club when you are dancing. But not in the car. And Roger would play it when I was trying to take a nap in the car. Not exactly the best sleeping music. For some weird reason, I could never just tune it out.
Maybe cause its annoying.

Hmm. This is getting harder .

5. His trust in so many of the Eastern medicine people.
I do not discredit Eastern medicine. I think there are a lot of good things about it. But I also think there are a lot of good Western medicine treatments.
However, some of the people who Roger associated with were just good conartists.
Roger was a smart guy. He did questioned things, people, and their motives.
For some reason though, these people were given credit before they deserved it. And although Roger was starting to see through certain people and some of the others, he still supported them.
I will never forget the $5K for a trip to China that did not include anything but this one guy's teachings. Hmm, yeah, no.
Or the person who told me that Roger had a lot of energy coming from the left side of his brain which was the part that was dead. Can he be more lame?

I was going to do ten things like the movie title but I just really could not think of ten things.
Sad I know.
Like I said, I am forgetting things. And "hate" is a harsh word.
Oh well.
Let me introduce my husband, Saint Roger...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Crossing State Lines

After Roger and I got engaged, I wanted him to see my hometown.
I wanted him to see where I grew up and meet some of my extended family.
And I wanted it to be a road trip.
Cause that's my idea of fun, right? Being stuck with my fiance in a car for two days, eating crap food, and of course I wanted to drive my small car.
Roger said I wanted to show off my car.
And secretly, yes, he was right. Did I ever admit it? I don't think so. But Roger knew me well enough and sometimes I just did not have to say the words "You're right" for him to know it.

I love my car.
It's so cute and it does have a slightly bigger gas tank that Roger's car so we would get a little more milage between fill ups (like a whole fifty miles more).
I love my rationalizing.

So the plan was to leave Orlando after work, drive through the night to the South Carolina/North Carolina border about eight hours in, sleep in a hotel, and then wake up early and drive the rest of the way.
We were going to go to the Richmond area first to see my mom who could not travel back to my hometown at the time.
Then we would drive over to my hometown and stay for a few days.
And before coming home, we would see my father and go on a fishing adventure.
Great plan.
And as Roger would say "When you make plans, God laughs."

First, when we were packing the car, Roger decided he would like to take his own fishing poles.
Okay. No big deal.
But wait, we are taking the MINI.
"Do they come apart so they will fit better?"
Roger insisted "Nope. But we can fit them in between the driver and passenger seats."
"Okay." A little annoying when spending pretty much more than twenty four hours in the car but okay.

Background info:
Roger was a very healthy eater (read picky eater).
He did not eat pork or red meat and hadn't in fifteen years.
He also had a weak stomach.

So we set off.
We left after work a little later than I wanted but that was okay. No big deal.
I drove first and got us out of Florida.
Roger had never driven across state lines.
So I showed him all the cool fun facts that when entering a new state they have signs about the different traffic laws.
Roger asked if he could drive into South Carolina from Georgia so he could experience the thrill.
"Sure. I'll take a nap while you drive."
I woke up as we were about to enter into South Carolina.
Roger was estatic. Simple pleasures.

"Man, for lunch I had this weird Chinese food."
"Oh really? What was weird about it?" I inquired.
"Well, I ordered chicken but I think they gave me the wrong thing. I only ate a few bites before I realized it and then just ate some of the plain rice."
"Can we stop at the next rest area?"
"Sure. I could stretch my legs."
"And can you drive?"

Roger had a habit of telling me some of his bathroom issues.
I never really wanted to know this information but he told me anyway and then would state "Don't you love me?" or "Aren't you glad we are this close?"

As we get back to the car, "Man, I don't think my stomach liked that lunch."
And he continued to tell me about his bathroom experience.
Short version was that he did not feel good and his stomach was not happy that he may have eaten beef and/or pork.

So we got back on the road.
For about five minutes.
And I know it was five minutes because those green road signs that tell drivers how far to certain cities are five miles apart.
And I know that because I saw every one in the state of South Carolina.
Poor guy.

Being the nice fiancee I was, I was annoyed.
I knew he could not help it.
But I also wanted to just get to the hotel for the night.
And poor guy, he just wanted to stop where ever we were and get a hotel.
But I already made reservations.
That was the plan.
Gotta stick to the plan.
And every time we would start to see the green milage sign, I'd look at him and he would say "I don't think I need to stop at this one."
But as it was about to go out of sight, "Please stop now."
Great. Just great.
I did not want to be angry but I sorta was. Not at him. Just at our luck.

Poor poor guy.
We finally make it over the North Carolina border and to our hotel.
And at the end of the first leg of our trip, we survived and we were still engaged.
His underwear however did not. It stayed in North Carolina and moved to boxer heaven.

Oh, and those fishing poles... yeah they totally came apart. My father showed us before we drove back to Orlando.

The Nursing Home Experience

Last week, I read the book "Water for Elephants."
It is a great story and I highly recommend it.
Without giving too much away, it is about a old man who lives in a nursing home. When he was a young guy, he a circus veterinarian and has some interesting tales about circus life. Its a great novel.
As the old man, he describes nursing home living. He talks about how all the food is just mush without taste because of so many dietary restrictions. How he longs for an apple or corn on the cob. He also talks about how they treat you like you are crazy, stupid, senile, or all of the above. He may be old but he still has his wits. How they medicate you just to keep you quiet. How family and friends don't visit or if they do, they aren't truly talking to you as a person.
I know that not all nursing homes are like this but I have a feeling it is the majority of them.
It made me extremely sad.
It made me think about how Roger would have been in a nursing home.

And then, ironically, I found myself in a nursing home.
My friend's daughter was singing Christmas carols to the nursing home residents.
And I was with them.
I wanted to cry.
I fought back the tears but I know my eyes were very watery.
These people are just sitting in chairs.
There are some that couldn't feed themselves.
They couldn't do anything for themselves.
They just sit. They are stooped over in their chairs.
They just exist.
No life.

And then I know, once more, that I did make the right decision.
Roger wouldn't want to be here.
Roger wouldn't want to be a resident.
Even though, he would never be rolled into a nursing home dining room with his condition, I just know I don't want him there at all.
I don't even want myself there.
Just existing. With no quality of life. With nothing.
He would have just been alive, not even breathing on his own.

And for what?
For me?
For his family?
Just long enough for his body to waste away or catch some infection that run rampant in those places.


Saturday, December 13, 2008


I am such a mess.
I hate this feeling.

As I have mentioned before, I took my wedding band and engagement ring to be combined and put into a custom design.
I wanted to be able to wear them forever even if I got remarried. (Sorry, Mr. New Husband)
Today the wax mock up was ready for me to review.
I was very excited. I have been missing seeing my diamond and the feeling of wearing a ring. After two years of wearing something its a weird feeling not to have something.
My hands look so naked and I just miss my rings so much.
I miss what they represent.

Well, I arrive and this very annoying sales person who I refused to work with before approaches me. But not just approach, like she was invading my personal space and talking very loudly.
"Oh, you are back" in her very nasally annoying voice.
I run over to the work area and tell them my name.
First it takes forever for them to find my rings.
I think I stopped breathing for a few minutes.
Finally they find the rings with one of the jewelry making guys.

They bring the wax mold over to me.
And... I hate it.
They made it just like the picture and did not make the changes to it that I wanted.
It is bulky and looks gaudy.
I am sure people will think it is fake.
It is like nothing I would ever wear.
I want to cry.
I am not going to cry.
I am not going to cry here.
Not here.
So I ask them if they can make the band skinnier and change part of the setting to circle and not square.
"We will have to do a new mock up which will take an additional week."
I lose it.
Right there.
Right in front of half the store.
They freeze as I start sobbing.
"My husband just died and I really miss my rings and I just wanted to have this before Christmas."
Great... I'm really trying not to milk my circumstance.
I don't want people to think I'm just trying to ride this out for everything its worth.
I really am trying.
The jewelry guy makes a phone call, notes the changes, and tells me not to worry. I'll have it before Christmas. He wants me to be happy.

I guess it doesn't help that I'm sick and already emotional and was starting to get hungry.
I just want my ring. I want to see the diamond that Roger gave me.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Sick and Single

I know I did this before.
I know I was independent and self-sufficient.
I know I could take care of myself in sick times.
I know I was sick before I met Roger.
I remember those instances well.
But no matter what, it really sucks to do this without him.

Right now, I have a horrible head cold.
I hate not being able to breathe properly.
And more than not breathing or having a cold, I hate hate hate flying with a cold.
It's actually not recommended at all and if I wasn't coming home, I would not have done it.
But I did not have a choice today, so now I must suffer the consequences... alone.
My right ear has not popped yet and on the decent into Orlando, I thought my head was cracking open.

I miss having someone else go and get me chicken noodle soup.
I miss having someone else set me up on the couch.
I miss having someone run to the drugstore for me.
I miss having someone here who really cares about my health.

At the airport and the drugstore, people politely smiled at me but I just could not be bothered.
I don't want to smile today.
I don't want to smile on most days and especially when I feel like crap.
And if I smile for too long, I may pass out since I have to breathe through my mouth.

[And a side story:
I was on Southwest flight where you pick your own seat.
I sat near the window and a lady sat down next to me in the aisle seat.
I was almost tempted to warn her that I was sick but I didn't.
When I started violently sneezing about fifteen minutes after take off, she disappeared.
Between sneezes one and two she was there, but between sneezes three and four, she was gone. It was almost as though my sneezes blew her away about ten rows behind me.]

So this is my new life.
This is me having to take care of myself again.
When I had finally succumbed to having someone else take care of me, he is no longer here.
This is f#cked up.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Sweet sweet escape.
Sometimes I love just getting away from everything.
Getting away from my life.
Getting away from my house.
And when I do, everything is normal.
Roger is at home and I am just away for a short trip.

There is no work to go back to besides the business of death.
And for a few days, I can pretend that Roger is at home waiting for me.
That the past few months are just an illusion.
A very very bad dream.

And being here with my widow friend finally gives me someone who truly does understand.
We can cry together.
I can share my truly crazy thoughts and she does not look at me like I'm insane.
Although our circumstances are a little different, we have so many similarities.
The sad part is how much our lives have been similar even before this even our relationships with our families and our siblings.

So for now, I'm half pretending Roger is alive and well
and the other half is knowing finally someone understands my feelings for what they are.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Silly hair brush

Before I had my hair chemically straightened (the night before the accident), I rarely brushed my hair.
I only brushed it before getting into the shower to help eliminate my constant shedding not to occur in the shower.
Of course, I never used any of the five or six hair brushes I own. No, no, I used Roger's hair brush.
After showering, I normally just comb my hair but not always.

So as we were packing for our honeymoon, I refused to pack on of my hair brushes or my comb.
But I put Roger's hair brush in his toiletry bag.
And Roger, knowing that I used his hair brush but I would never admit to it even though he would see me (I'm strange, I know), took it out of his toiletry bag. I'm not sure now looking back why he didn't take it for himself.
I did not know this fact until we were in St. Lucia.
The whole time I was on my honeymoon, I could not brush my hair.
Not one time.
Not after being in the ocean.
Not when I tumbled across the ocean floor after being knocked over by a wave.
Not after wearing a helmet during the zip line tour.
The best part was Roger did this on purpose.
Something about teaching me a lesson.
He wanted me to pack stuff I needed for myself in my own bag.

So I used lots of conditioner that week and hoped I looked half way decent for the pictures we were taking. It was also a week lots of pony tails.
Silly boy or silly girl depending on which of us you talked to.

Now, I still use Roger's hair brush before showering.
It makes me feel a little closer to him since I have gotten rid of a lot of his bathroom stuff. I even still keep it on his side of the vanity.
I have had to clean it since his death. Which of course makes me feel like I've lost the physical evidence of his existence. It is also something that in my denial to Roger that I was using his hair brush, I didn't do before.
But its there. And its perfect. And I love it.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


I love the fact that after a plane crash, they can go back and look at the blackbox.
They can see all the information that happened right before the crash.
They can reconstruct the information to know why, who, what, when, and how.
Its so smart.
They are starting to equipe them in trains as well.
And now some cars even can sense when you have been in a crash.

I so wish the brain had a similar black box.
A way to go back to the moment of the accident.
A way to go back a few moments before the accident.
There are so so many questions I have.
And absolutely no way to answer them.

Did Roger see the SUV? Did he try to react? Did he brake? Did he see the cops riding behind and in front of us?

Did he say something to me? It seems like I vaguely remember something but I think I am making it up.

Did he hear me gasp? Did I say something else?

Did he feel pain? Did we have any interaction before I got out of the car? Did he ever regain any sort of consciousness in the car? Could he hear me yelling at him?

What shirt did he have on? I'm not sure why that one bothers me, but it does. I have no idea and can't remember. I do not have his clothing anymore to try to use a rule out method and not like I had his clothing memorized anyway. I know he looked cute. He was trying to look nice for my friends and family he was going to meet that day.
The hospital gave me back everything but his shirt even his undershirt. I don't know what happened to his actual shirt.

What were we talking about right before? I know it was me that was talking right as I saw the SUV but what we were discussing, I have no idea.

Then, what was the brain doing for those next six days?
Where was Roger's soul? Was it in a holding pattern?
Could he hear us?
Did he know I was there?

Did he know he was dying?
What was happening to his thoughts during his death?

So many many questions and absolutely no answers...
It is beyond frustrating.
Will the questions ever be replaced with peace?

Friday, December 5, 2008

Broken Cats

When Roger and I first adopted our kittens last year, Gizmo was very sick.
We did not know it at first but by the third day she was on the brink of life or death.
Of course, we were already attached to the dear girl.
Even my husband who kept telling me they were my decision.

They were both underweight for their age but in those first few days Gizmo lost additional 4 ounces for only weighing two pounds, it was a lot.
She had a nasty bacterial infection in her GI tract that adult cats get a lot but they have the proper balance of good bacteria to fight it. Gizmo did not have that good bacteria. And considering it was extremely contagious, both cats were being treated.
And according to my dear husband, I choose broken cats.

The non-sick cat, Gadget, took her medicine like it was a treat. She followed all the rules just like me.
Gizmo would not just like Roger. She would start blowing saliva bubbles the minute we picked her up.
The orange medicine would end up all over her black face along with our bathroom walls.
Roger would take her and wash her face with a warm cloth. It was so sweet and she would let him.

She stopped eating and then stopped drinking by Saturday morning.
She was starting to get very lethargic.
We were worried.
So I took her to the vet and he instructed me how to give our poor kitty an IV for the next 48 hours three times a day.
When I brought her home and explained the whole process to Roger, I think he looked at me like I was from Mars.

It was a tag team process.
We hung the IV fluid from the upper kitchen cabinets to get gravity in our favor while we all sat on the floor.
Roger would hold poor Gizmo still while I put a needle underneath her skin.
The whole process took about five minutes. Poor Gizmo. And poor Roger was wondering what we/I had gotten us into.
But she started gaining weight and getting better.

We went away for the first weekend. We were only gone about 36 hours. We were both curious how they would do on their own.
We came home to both cats greeting us as we walked in.
I gasped when I saw poor Gizmo. She had a huge bald spot between her shoulder blades.
Great. What now.
Turns out she is allergic to the flea treatment we put on her a few weeks before but it takes that long for cats to show any signs due to the number of layers of fur and skin.
Roger exclaimed to me "You got us broken cats!"

And while our kittens were getting used to living with us, they did not play very much. I am not sure if they just didn't know how or if they were just not quite comfortable. And poor Gizmo just was too sickly. Some of their toys they seemed almost scared of. Eventually Gadget started to play with a string. However, Gizmo was still "broken."

It took a lot of patience and a lot of persistence, but eventually both cats started playing.
Roger even started pretending to train them for his own private circus he suddenly had a desire for. He trained them to jump between two stools as he spread them further and further apart. He would get so excited to see them succeed.
In this circus attempt, we tried to harness the poor cats. Roger wanted to be able to walk the cats cause that wouldn't look crazy at all.
They did not take to it. They just laid down or ran into the furniture.
At least part of the circus dream was crushed.
I was once again accused of adopting us "broken cats."

Poor Gizmo once more had a health scare.
One night she started drooling non-stop.
She had not eaten anything strange (to our knowledge) or gotten into anything but no matter what she had pools of drool where ever she sat for a few minutes.
Once more, Roger took her to the vet.
The vet checked her out with nothing but more drool. He gave her some atropine and she came home.
She was a little drugged but she was back to normal.
Normal but "broken".

But this broken cat had Roger's heart.
She sat on a stool next to the couch on his side of couch each evening and he would hang his hand over to pet her.
Her fur and coloring is so spontaneous much like Roger's personality.
She is affectionate but only in small doses much like Roger.
Also like Roger, she enjoyed some alone time.
She was Roger's cat.
She loved spending time with him. She would follow him upstairs for his meditation time and meow for him to open the door. (She almost never meowed at that time.)

I worried about her once I came home and he never returned.
I think both cats miss him. But I think Gizmo, the very "broken" cat, misses him even more.
She has started meowing more regularly.
The first random moment was one day when I passed her as I was walking through the family room. She was sitting on the rug and I looked down at her to ask her what was going on. She just simply looked up at me and meowed. She had food. She had water. Her litter box was clean, but suddenly she was randomly meowing.

She has fallen in love with Roger's favorite Christmas present from a few years ago. It is a laser level with a stud finder. She loves the laser part of it. Much more than the cat laser I bought for them.
She knows its beep as well as the noise it makes when I pick it up.
It now sits on my coffee table for playtime whenever I feel like it.

They never really searched the house for him, but they don't let me out of their sight much. They follow me into every room.
They both talk more.
They are both so much more affecionate.
My broken cats.

Whats in the refrigerator?

It's a question I have used to stimulate conversation in the past for several reasons.
First, a lot can be learned about a person. Do they just have beer and ketchup?
Do they have gourmet ingredients? Do they have lots of leftovers?

I hate what's in my fridge. It's annoying. There is still a lot of Roger's crap. Stuff that I'll never use or eat.
Like spreadable butter. I guess I'll keep it till it expires. Maybe I'll have a visitor who likes it. I just hate the stuff. Too weird for me to have "butter" that is like that.

I also still have jerk seasoning we brought back from our honeymoon in St. Lucia.
It was not that expensive and I think I only got to use it once before the accident.
I want to use it again.. I think.
But I'm scared of the emotions attached to this silly sauce.
It also means I would need to cook a semi-real meal which I also have not done very much.

There is also some weird fruit smoothie thing that I won't drink.
Just one.
I don't have the heart to throw it out.
I wish someone would just drink it.

Someone during the accident brought some drinks to the hospital.
It is still in the fridge too.
No one likes it.
Again, I just wish it would disappear.

The pantry is full of his stuff too.
Some things I'll eventually use.
Like the million and one cans and packs of tuna.
We loaded up when a local grocery store was going out of business and it does not expire for a while.
Roger would eat it for dinner sometimes when I was eating my cereal for dinner and he wanted some protein.

So what does that all say about me?
Who knows.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


On Tuesday I had to get my car worked on - oil change and brakes done.
Not a huge deal.
The wonderful thing about my car is that it does not have to have the oil changed except for about once a year.
The bad thing is a lot has happened since the last time I had my oil changed.

When I came into the service area, I saw my maiden name up on the board.
"Oh hey, I need to change my info."
When he brought my information up on the screen, I saw that almost all my information was wrong. My address from three years ago was still there as well as my really old cell phone number.
The service guy cheerfully helped me change everything.
And then it happened.
Being the really nice guy he is, he says "Congratulations on your marriage!" with a huge smile on his face.
Hmm, what do I do? Do I tell him "thanks" and just keep going?
No of course not, because that would have just been easy and clean. No, no, can't do that.
"Actually, I'm a widow now. My husband was killed in a car accident."
Poor guy.
His face actually contorted to some thought like "Oh sh!t". The poor guy wanted to just eat his words. I felt horrible for him.
After he gave me the estimate for my brakes, I told him not to worry about that. He didn't know. No one knows what to say or how to act. He seemed relieved.

I have several thoughts and feelings about this.

First, this really sucks. I am still getting congratulations for my marriage. I was only married nine months ago. Nine months!! Although it seems like a lifetime ago now considering the rest of 2008 went.

Second, my wedding gift registry is even still active.
My registry will go on longer than my marriage. How effing sad is that! Its great for those looking to get me a gift. I have deleted the "Roger" items. I guess I might as well use it. But it sucks that we did not even make it to the point where our registry expired before we did. I still get emails about it and things in the mail. Ugh.

Third, I am still changing my name. Not even that process is complete. And yet, the man I changed it for is gone. And according to the IRS and other government things, I'm single. And some paper work does give the option of widow. But this is just wrong. Not even my passport is completely changed.

Fourth, I'm single and not by choice. I've heard of people not even making it to the year point. I've heard of people who made it to the year point but hated their spouse by that point. I went into marriage knowing that I wasn't going to be like those people. Divorce wasn't an option for us.
Yet, here I am. Single. Alone. While those other people, flippantly went into marriage or are in bad relationships. I was in a great relationship. Yes, Roger was not perfect but we were perfect for each other. This is so unfair.

So unfair...

I'm not that strong...

... at least not Star strong.

It was one of the things Roger really liked about me.
He loved the way I could handle things on my own.
How I could deal with my own stuff.
I was independent. I could take care of myself.

Once when I ran out of gas, I called Marlyn who lived close by and we completely handled the situation. I was even able to laugh at myself.
No damsel in distress call needed. He loved that about me. I was not like his previous girl friends.

Sometimes he said I even needed to lean a little more on him and on other people.
And I was trying. I was getting better.
It's hard for me to depend on someone else.

But now, I'm not that strong person I'm used to.
I'm not Star stong. I am so weak in my eyes.
And its really hard for me to accept this new person.
I have the paranoia that is really annoying.
I suspect everything and everyone.
I have the irrational fears that make everyone look like a criminal and there is almost always going to be some sort of crime around me. Or some outragely obsecure situation.
Nor can I handle more than a few tasks per day without getting really stressed out.

And I definitely can not handle any bumps in the road.
This was proven once again by a little hiccup on the way home tonight.
I knew I needed gas but I thought I could make it to my exit on the way home. According to my car's computer I had about 33 miles.
Not a problem.
Well, on the way home there is a detour.
I beep on my horn to signal to the world that this is not acceptable. This is not part of the plan.
The detour takes thirty minutes to get to and get around except I don't make it all the way around.
In probably the worst section of Orlando, my car stalls.
This is the area of town that a few years ago I saw a lady expose her breasts as she tried to get a "job."
I'm out of gas.
F#&%! F#&%! F#&%!
I lose my head.
I start crying.
People are blowing their horn at me.
I can't remember what the hell to do.
I finally put the car in neutral and hysterically phone Courtney to help me since she had just been at a concert with me.
A random lady stops to help me push my car, she walks with me to the gas station across four lanes of traffic, pump the gallon of gas, and then helps me put it into my car.
At the same time, a policeman also shows up to make sure we are okay. He watches our cars as we get the gas. This lady completely takes control of the situation. She was Star strong. [Thank God for random acts of kindness.]

As I drove home, I thought how I'm not the strong person I once was. How people think I am but how I think I'm not. This is not me! This is not the girl I'm used to.
There are so many days where I just want to crawl up into bed and have one of my friends hold me while I cry. Actually I want this about every day for the past couple of weeks.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

"well-developed, well-nourished"

After weeks of hounding the Orange County Medical Examiner's office, I finally got the autopsy report.
I wanted it for curiosity's sake (some sick need to torture myself with more final information) and I later learned I needed it for insurance purposes.

I got the big fat envelope in today's mail.
Then I started thinking, "Do I want to open it first or do I want to sort through the other mail first?"
Junk mail first.
Bills next.
Then the autopsy.
I read it while standing up the first time.
There it is. All in black and white.
All permanent.
All official.

Most of the information was not new.
I had a physician friend translate it for me into more plain English.
Lots of brain damage. Lots of bleeding, lots of swelling, and lots of brain bruises.
Even his basic functioning was gone based on a lot of damange.
Pretty much all the damage they were seeing on the CT scan and predicting was there and it was there.
Roger would not have recovered.
Roger would have been in the exact state he was in on morning of his death for the rest of his life. At least mentally.
He would have lived in a nursing home, hooked up to a ventilator, having a feeding tube delivering his food, never awakening, never walking, never talking, and never seeing his world.

There is a sweet relief to having this information.
I did make the right decision.
I did what he would have wanted.
I did not choose to kill my viable husband.
He was not there.

There is also a lot of pain associated with it.
He is gone.
The permanency is even more real.
This is not a dream.
This is not going to change.
He is not here.

I also did not expect to be included.
But there I am, "his wife" the identifier.
There are both our names in black and white.
Our relationship clearly defined.
I was his wife.
I was put in the horrid position of identifying my 34 year old husband of six months.

It was nice to read that he was "well-developed" and "well-nourished".
He had nice teeth.
He had no deformities.
He had no cancer.
He had no congenital defects.
He had no drugs in his system.
He was perfect.

There are also some strange things that bother me.
Like the fact he wasn't dressed.
I sort of expected him to be in a hospital gown for some strange reason.

I was also bothered by reading all the medical intervention "evidence."
I was warned about this section but its still hard to read.
To read about all the catheters, bandages, and staples.

Maybe I'm sadistic or a masocist.
Maybe I'm too curious.
But at least he was well-nourished and well-developed.
He was perfect.

Monday, December 1, 2008

What a day

Today I started to get back to my "normal" routine.

At 9:47am, I realized I set my alarm for pm instead of am.

I called about getting my windshield replaced for the second time in three months from yes "a new rock."

As I was completely some paperwork, I kept signing and dating things as 12/1/80.

And about 6pm I realized, my pants are on backwards.
While in HomeDepot.

Yeah... it's been a long day.

The Blood

The accident has started replaying in my head again.
It has stopped for a while but now its back.
And mostly its not the entire accident that keeps replaying now, but just short snips of it.

As I saw the SUV coming, I gasped.
This did not make sense.
How is there someone coming toward us on this road?!
We were on a highway. Where is this driver coming from?
There are only exits and entrances, not intersections.
My mind was not truly grasping what was happening as it is coming toward us and the SUV does not seem like it is slowing down.

Then I realize "Shit, we are going to be in accident."
I have no recollection of what Roger was started doing.
Was he talking to me still?
Did he see the SUV?
What did he do when I gasped?

Then, I dropped my hands down and grabbed onto the bottom part of my seat on each side. This action is what cut my forearm on the console.
I knew I should not tense up. Was I tensing up?
I wait for the impact.
People are in accidents everyday.
We would not be going to the reunion or seeing family in Virginia but everything would be fine.
We'd get through this.

As I understand from the police report, there was a cop in front of us and there was a cop behind us seeing the whole accident. They were driving home from their shifts.
We were in one of the left middle lanes. Our car was hit on the driver's door and our car slid about 75 feet to the right shoulder of the road.

I do not know how long I sat in the car without getting out.
I do not know if I tried to talk to Roger before getting out.
I do not know if I tried to touch him.
I do remember reaching for the door handle.
I do remember not even bothering to put both shoes on (I have a bad habit of slipping out of my shoes when I'm a passenger).
I do not remember feeling the wet, debris-filled road with my barefeet.
I sort of remember seeing blue lights from the police car coming from behind me.

I am standing on Roger's side of the car.
I am looking at him with his eyes closed.
I start to yell at Roger to get out of the car.
I keep yelling at him.
I hear a car drive by and hit the debris on the road.
The car door is gone.
But Roger must get out.

Roger is facing me.
I take my right hand out to touch his face.
The left side of his face.
The part of his face that is resting on the car seat.
As I touch his face, there is a warm gooey substance on my hand.
I look at my right hand in utter disbelief.
It's Roger's blood.
This can not be real.

It was all over my right hand.
I start to scream.
Time starts to stop.
I can't breathe.

The cop is running toward me.
He is telling me how I am bleeding a lot and I need to sit down.
I look at my left arm.
I see the bone.
My engagement ring and my wedding band are covered in my blood.
My right hand is covered in Roger's.

I am sat on the ground.
Panic starts to set in.
Tears are streaming down my face.
I cannot take a deep breath.
Rain is falling on me.
I want to go back to the car.
I want to be with Roger.

No one answers my questions.
Is he breathing?
Does he have a pulse?

My life starts crumbling.
Oh my God.
Please oh my God.

My mouth is full of glass.
I can feel it cutting me.
I feel it grinding in my teeth.
I need water.
I need Roger.
I need this not to be my life.

Finally someone brings me my purse.
A man with a badge around his neck with an orange polo shirt.
I think my arm is broken.
I can see the bone but I can move my fingers.
Can I move my fingers if my arm is broken?
I want to go back to the car.
They won't let me near him.
They say they are keeping me safe.

They all knew the ending.
They all knew how our story would end.

Marlyn cleaned my rings.
I threw away my bloody clothes.
We brought home his bloody boots.
The blood underneath my nails eventually went away.
But I will never forget the moment of his blood on my hand.