September 13, 2012
There is a day coming. A day we must all face in our own way and in our own time. A day that someone we love will leave this earth. A day that he will no longer be here to turn to when we need advice. A day that his laughter or silly jokes will no longer fill the room. We are told he has a year to live. When we were children, a year seemed like a long time. Like too long to wait for something we really looked forward to. We couldn’t wait to be a year older, an inch taller, a grade higher or a step closer to that next milestone in life… But this is a year that we do not want to happen. This is a year that each day will pass begrudgingly as we watch this hour glass run out, as we watch each moment we have left with him blow out the window... This is the year that Hope is no longer in our vocabulary and there are no more straws to grasp at.
Many people have their own ways of coping; some people have no ways of coping at all. This is my way... living it out like a story, writing it from a distance like it is not really happening to me, like we are watching a movie, and at the end of the movie the world will keep turning and the movie will only be a memory left in the back of our minds. This is my secret little place to feel my pain without spreading it into everyone else around me already hurting and lost. This is my place to figure things out along the way... A place to put my memories, thoughts, and fears for this year to come. A way to dig my nails into the ground and leave my mark screaming that I will not let this year pass without dragging me away kicking and screaming.
I am a dying man’s worst friend. Not because I do not care, but because I care too much. I am overcome with such grief and sadness in watching you fade away that I do not know how to act around you… and that is what it is ACTING. Because inside of me I want to wrap my arms around you and hold you until I am physically unable to do it anymore. So I find myself avoiding you, avoiding eye contact. Afraid of you, because I am afraid I will break down right in front of you. As if you are not already suffering enough with your own inner struggles, I do not want to become the slightest ounce of added pain in your life. So I hold my breath and try to breathe very slowly when I have to be near you. I am repeating phrases inside my head like “Don’t break” and praying you don’t say anything that is going to remind me, You are dying.
The first time I saw you after we got the news, I know the truth hadn’t hit me yet, it still hasn’t, it has only been 3 days. But now every word you say to me is going to become a painful memory, How can I enjoy another minute with you KNOWING that soon, everything we are doing now, is going to tear my heart apart when I think about it?
“Who loves you?” That is the first thing you said to me after we found out. You wrapped your arm over me as I replied “You do” I fought those tears with everything I am, I stayed strong… for you... and I saved them for now, for this very page. Here where I hide my pain. Here where I am only watching from far away... Safe from the pain.