I don't really need to spend a lot of time dealing with how it feels to not have gotten to say goodbye to him and to not have been there to stop him from drowning. I've pretty much dealt with all that. It sucks, but it is what it is and there's not much I can do about it now.
I did however, discover during my mulling that there are still a lot of things I feel I should say to him.
Most of them stem from a very bitter, angry place. This is why I do not like for them to see the light of day. I am ashamed of such thoughts. Ashamed that I could be so selfish as to think of his life and death as my personal tragedy.
Ashamed that I can still be so damn angry with him. And angry that I should feel so angry.
I always complain that he made life difficult with his constant reminders that he was going to die before he turned 25.
I rarely include how angry I still am at him for promising me happily ever after, for making me believe - before taking it all away.
He wooed me and wowed me and made me believe that he loved me and wanted to be with me forever, that we could have our happily ever after.
Then life got hard. The seizures grew worse, I got pregnant, he announced he wouldn't live to 25, we both got scared.
Once when I was several months pregnant and bitching that he couldn't hardly drink a fifth of liquor and not expect to have a seizure, he announced that he wasn't sure if he was really in love with me or not.
I was devastated. I felt crushed by the weight of our responsibility and felt as though he were leaving me to deal with it all on my own.
He married me six months later and showered me for a bit with love and affection, but there was always a sadness in his eyes, a heaviness in his heart - the weight of which he never hesitated to share with me.
I had a hard time believing him after that. There was no happy ever after. He was going to die and he was okay with that, he looked forward to it.
For some reason he thought I would be okay with that.
He told me once that it never occurred to him that I might need his help because I always seemed to have everything together and was so independent. I tried to tell him it was all just a show.
He claimed The Boy and I were the only things that brought him happiness, the only things that even came close to make life worth living. But he was still going to die by the age of 25 and he was ok with that, he damn near begged for it.
He didn't get why I took it so personally.
He didn't have an expiration date or anything. It's not like he had some sort of progressive disease that we all knew would steadily deteriorate until he died. No, he had a controllable condition. One that he refused to control, despite the fact that he KNEW his decisions were causing it to spin horribly out of control. Despite the fact that he KNEW we were the ones who would be left to pick up the pieces when it all came crushing down. Despite the fact that he had promised me forever, promised me happily ever after.He was my best friend. I had trusted him.
"You can't do this to us. You promised us happily ever after and now you're telling me that we're not going to get it because this life is too fucking hard for you to deal with, because it's too fucking hard for you to do the right thing?! You can't do this. You can't remind me daily of how you don't matter because you're going to be dead anyway and expect me to be ok with that. You can't be happy with that knowledge also knowing how much it destroys me to think about losing you. You can't expect us to sit here and watch you choose death over us and be happy about it. You can't expect us to sit here and watch you self-destruct, a product of your own self-hate and self-pity. You have no right to make us watch you drown in your own misery.
It wasn't until after I left that you thought we were worth fighting for and even then you had to hit rock bottom first. We wasted 4-6 months of our lives together all because you refused to even try to want to live, to try to fight. Because it was just too fucking hard.
I've spent a lot of time being pissed off at myself for that wasted time, but I guess it's been too easy for me to accept the brunt of that burden. In reality, you were just as much at fault. I may have left but you certainly pushed.
There are times I think you did it in an attempt to save me. And others when I believe you did it to punish me.
I made you promise not to die doing something stupid so that I wouldn't hate you forever. You cleaned up your act right before you died. The marriage counselor hadn't been fooled, but I was. You were taking your medicine. At least I couldn't hate you for dying.
But part of me will always believe you killed yourself, same as though you had committed suicide.
The fact that it wasn't suicide just means that you didn't leave a fucking note, which really pisses me off.
I remember us talking about it one night - so strange how it was a part of so many casual conversations. You made it clear what you wanted, how you expected me to carry on. I made you promise to haunt me - to stick around until you were certain I would be ok. I think you've done that.
But you never said goodbye. You tried to prepare me - made me absolutely fucking miserable reminding me so often, but you tried to prepare me. You told me things you thought I needed to know. It's getting hard to remember some of them - conversations held years and years ago, late at night while everyone else slept.
But you never said goodbye. And then you left me here, to bear the weight of our responsibility alone, without you.
But you never said goodbye. Instead your lips brushed my ear when the magistrate said "til death do you part" and you murmured softly "not even death."
How dare you make me watch you drown, even if you at least tried to make sure I didn't have a front row seat.
You never said goodbye.
And I was left picking up the pieces of your broken promise. It's exhausting to be that damn angry.
It's absolutely maddening to see your son make many of the same type of self-destructive choices. And it's just as much a crushing heartache when he lies to me, when he breaks his promises.
You're not here to make him understand and that pisses me off too.