one year.

Dear Chad,

Here I sit.
The end of my first year without you.
The beginning of the second.

A year ago, I couldn’t imagine what a year without you would be like…what it would feel like, look like…what it would be.
I couldn’t even imagine a minute of my world without you in it.

Three hundred sixty five days.
Four seasons.
Three broken hearts in one small house.

I’ve not
heard your voice
smelled your cologne
washed your laundry
given you a kiss
or a hug
prepared your beloved maple and brown sugar oatmeal
made your bed, with the pillows just the right way
read the Sports section to you
argued with you about getting out of bed
felt the pounding of your heart against my head as I lay it on your chest
felt you gaze at me across the room

We’re mending, but never to be fully fixed.
I am proud of us, how far we’ve come.
You gave that gift to us; you made me (and the girls, too) stronger than I ever knew possible.

I’ve done my best and I’m certain you know that.
I will always keep my promises to you.

I love the little moments in my daily life where I can remember our life without tears falling down my cheeks.
I actually laugh more than I cry; which is a critical shift I’ve been waiting for.
The memories and joy outweighing the pain.
It’s taken a while to get here.
I’m grateful.
And I’m relieved this year is over.

The girls are doing well.
They don’t know the significance of today.
And I am not going to tell them.
When they get older, they will remember the date all by themselves.
I owe them one year; at least one “anniversary” that I didn’t bring it to their attention.

They have been doing so well; I don’t want to drag them back down, even briefly.
Carys is actually making some serious progress lately; I am so proud.
Cailyn is headstrong (thanks for that, by the way), but she is also such a sweetheart.
They miss you and talk about you almost daily now; without tears. Happy memories from before IT was a word in our vocabulary.

There were so many things I planned to say to you today.
You already know.
You let me have plenty of time to say it.
Thank you; for being you, for letting me be me, for giving me these beautiful little girls, for helping me find my own confidence and strength and perseverance.

I miss you.


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3 Responses to one year.

  1. Gwen Bell says:

    I knew today was the day, and I came by to see how you are. I knew, because I spent the end of last year bearing witness from afar. I wrote about it, and you and Chad and the girls, at the time, folding your story into my own memories of witnessing my mom's denouement at this time of year, 19 years ago this year. 

    November and December, the darkest months of the year for me. Thank you for sharing your story, his story, their story. Our story.

    (There is a light.)

  2. Loralee says:

    I have been thinking about you all week, always to be honest with you.  Sadly remebering this day a year ago I happen to check your blog today even knowing you had plans to stop writing.  Ii am glad you posted today.  Your love and strength gives me and many others strength and courage.  Our love and prayers are with you and the girls – today and always.

  3. Noellesandiford says:

    I cant believe its almost been 2 years!

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