|I LOVE YOU!|
It was last year, Valentine's Day, that my husband and I attended a meeting with our children's school. Eric wasn't feeling well, he hadn't felt well since the November prior but went anyway. He never missed a meeting with the school, a play our children were in or a pick up at the bus stop if he could race home in time (Which he almost always did.) It was important to Eric to be there for his children.
February 17, 2011 instead of still swooning over a romantic Valentine's Day that just past - I was on the floor screaming, "No, this can't be true. Stop talking. I can't hear you." I was screaming this to some doctor, whose name I can't remember, had just told me "Your husband has kidney cancer."
Tomorrow is one year after that meeting at school. How does a year go by so quickly - when days seems endless.
Having another Valentine enter my life (our lives), is not something I can see happening. I mean ever happening. My daughter asked me today if I'll be sad tomorrow during Valetine's Day? The truth is I'm sad today and it's not Valentine's Day and I've been sad...will tomorrow, Valentine's Day, feel different than today....
...tomorrow is going to be the 1st "holiday" of the rest of the holidays to be spent without my husband.
When people meet and say it feels like we've known each other for a lifetime - it takes longer than that. As does love. Being someone's true Valentine is admitting that this person you've chosen is going to be your Valentine regardless of ___________________________.
My husband and I promised just that again as recently as 2008. We reaffirmed to each other that we wanted to be each others Valentine's for always. Since Eric's death I have had and still have to come to grips with not hearing "Happy Valetines Day Boss" That was our nicknames for each other. Not so romantic but it was real.
Reading Eric's death certificate reminded me that he was dead. The cause of death "natural". NATURAL? Being murdered by Cancer. A vicious bunch of cells that are only in your body to do one thing and that is kill you. And they did. They killed my husband. I wish we could have spent one more Valentine's Day - or one more birthday with our twins - or one more of my birthdays - or one more hour; 6:50 and not 5:50.
I can remember at abut 5:48, my husband took a big deep breath he held it and exhaled. I yelled for my son and my baby, as my big girl was holding my husband's hand as she had been doing endlessly for days. As my son crawled on the bed next to his sister, he held his dads and sisters hands. My husband looked at them smiled, said I love you, looked up at the ceiling inhaled deeply and never exhaled.
That is the Valentine and every other holiday they will have going forward. The gift of their Dad's last words, "I love you." Not to me, not to his parents, but to his darling children. That is my Valentine's gift. Knowing that they have his Daddy's heart like none of the rest of us.
I'll gladly give up all of my Valentine's Days for my children's hearts to be a little less broken. None of our hearts will be as they were before. None of our holidays will be as they were before. Everything is going to be different. Everything except the heart on the card we all would have gotten is the heart we hold within our own hearts.
I love you my darling Eric.
Happy Valentine's Day to you. I miss you so much. I wish I was buying you the five cards I always bought, which you always reminded me were four too many. I just couldn't help it. Three laughs and two mushy. It was my way. I got one mushy and one usually about farting (yes even on Valentine's Day). So no, I don't have a new Valentine to give a card to, and I don't see any Hallmark purchases in my future. But, if I close my eyes and sit quietly I can still hear Eric saying Happy Valentine's Day, and thank you for the chocolate dipped strawberries (his favorite).
From my heart to yours. I will always love you.