Christmas-Time Without The Love of My Life
It has been 3 1/2 months since the death of my love. Lee was diagnosed on May 19, 2010 and on that day I felt my heart literally drop. We were both told that Lee could possibly have cancer of his colon, as the colonoscopy instrument could not be passed through his colon area. Later that afternoon, it was confirmed that he did indeed have colon cancer and would need to have surgery (if he desired) as soon as possible to remove the tumor. On that day, it seem Lee was more hopeful and faithful to God than I was at the time.
As a 15 year R.N., who had once worked in an Oncology Unit at a Private Hospital, I knew this diagnosis could mean that I could lose the one person who had been so dear to me. A few days later, after Lee was admitted to the hospital, we found that he had stage 4 Colon Cancer (meaning that his cancer had already spread to his liver). Again, as a nurse, I knew that anytime cancer spread to the liver, the end results could be deadly.
For several months as I assist Lee with his meals, going back and forth to the doctor's office, chemo, blood work, trying to get him to eat more, assisting him in walking and trying to keep him upbeat to avoid depression, I found myself going deeper and deeper into a pit that was so very unfamiliar to me. As I watched Lee transform from what I saw as a healthy, independent, and good-looking man to a weak, fragile, "old in appearance" (due to failing health and weight loss) ill man, I was extremely hopeless and questioning what I missed in picking up on his illness during the first part of our relationship.
Lee was a strong vibrant man who tended to his yard, clean his own home, shopped, cooked, fished, exercised, visited the sick, actively involved in his church, attended adult learning classes, worked out at the gym, etc.. There was no fore-warning or signs that his body had been invaded by that terrible disease called "cancer." I could not understand and nor did I want to accept what had been placed before us to deal with. However, our conversations remained on God and a full recovery.
Lee praised God before this storm, through this storm and the night in which he was ushered into the kingdom of God. Since all of the chemo, medications, doctor's appointments, get well cards, praying at the alter, talking to relatives and friends about his diagnosis, assisting him with his medications and deep breathing slowly to lessen his back/side pain, encouraging him to remain strong and not to give up, and after the hope for a full recovery, I am left with only memories of the individual I loved so dearly. I am blessed for the time I had with Lee, I just wish it was longer and the end of his life would not have been so tragic for "us."
It is Christmas Eve and I know if Lee had lived, we would be together right now enjoying the season. Lee is gone and I miss him. I wish that we were together either here on earth or together in our heavenly home. I am not ready to say good-bye and nor have I visited his gravesite because I truly feel his love in my heart and that he is walking beside me daily. He has comforted me in so many ways since his death by first lingering in spirit a few days before his death and two weeks after his death and now from time to time throughout the day. I just wish I can hug, kiss, and tell him how much I love him one more time, as I can vividly remember doing so often in my memories. It seems like I should be able to reach through my daydreams of Lee and do these things easily once again. Sometimes, I feel Lee being taken away from me is just not fair and other times I feel I am not being fair by not wanting to release him (before his death and even now) to another dimension of life where he is now cancer and pain free forever.
Lee was so wonderful, slow to anger, compassionate, and well-respected/loved. I will truly miss the love of my life who came into my world, positively impacted my life and who left me far too soon. On this day (Christmas Eve), I want to honor Lee with my love and through my thoughts and memories of how he touched my life and cared for me in such a special way.
Merry Christmas Lee! Thank you for not only telling me how much you loved me but actually showing me how much you cared. I hope you are thinking of me just as much and as often as I think of you!