The love of my life chose to end his life two weeks ago today. There are no words to convey the loss and desperate emptiness I feel. He has struggled for years. I share here the words that I wrote during his last attempt, in August, as he struggled on a ventilator. I could do nothing but alternate between simply staring and listening and scribbling each moment as they came, clinging to each memory, as I feared that it would be our last.
He had threatened so many times that, sadly, the last time I saw him, I did not truly believe that it would be the last. You had to have seen the movie “Where Dreams May Come” to truly understand his final words to me.
“We are soulmates. I will always find you.”
We had a standing promise that no matter where life or death took either of us, we would find some way to find each other. This movie resonated strongly with us. For now, I digress and share my sad, almost prophetic words from my last experience as a tribute to him, as I know nothing else to do anymore but preserve and express my love for him and privately and also as publicly as possible.
I write this as I look at you. Rise and fall. Mechanical clicking partially drowned out by The Fray’s “Happiness”. I thought I had felt pain before. Well, I have. This surpasses pain. Just like “love”. I don’t know the appropriate word to convey this emotion. If I were Catholic, I suppose I would be sitting in Limbo. Joy on one side, torture on the other. Once again, these words do not fit.
I write these words not knowing if you will ever hear them. I suppose either way, you will somehow.
I have had so much to talk to you about …so much to say to you. I began it in a text, which sits unread on your phone. I couldn’t wait for today, but to be sitting here now? My heart can’t handle it. It’s laying trapped in a chest two feet from me, still keeping the rhythmic pumping and it dances with yours. For how long?
I have told you before, but I couldn’t feel it like this until this moment. I am connected to you. I can’t come up with the words to explain how. I watch my own life hang in the balance. I know that if you die, I do, too. Maybe not my physical body, but the part of me that matters.
I knew that this would be a horrific feeling, but I had no idea how badly someone could hurt on the inside. I feel like I am being turned inside out. The world stopped turning. Perhaps literally, as there was an earthquake and pending hurricane. Perhaps, the earth itself groans in pain. The sun does not shine. There is no light. It has lost its meaning.
Being separated from you before was terrible, but I could still feel you out there. You were and are omnipresent to me. You are in the air. I never comprehended that something so simple as the scent of your hair could impact me so much. Colors fade. Light is darkness. But the music, I still find you there. It is something that is somehow not taken. The emotion with it is horrible right now, but I find you there, and so that is where I will stay for now. As I listen, perhaps you are the DJ. Every note, every word somehow fits each moment. “If there is no one else beside you where your soul embarks, I will follow you into the dark.”
I would still follow you if I had a choice, but perhaps the only clarity of the moment is that I do not. I will be taken, and I will go, but I hope that we do not have to.
Perhaps, this is paraphrasing, but I believe that is was F. Scott Fitzgerald that said, “I wish I had done everything in the world with you.”
I suppose that is still possible, regardless of what happens here. The world does not end at death, but mine does with yours. And so, as I know that my journey continues here for now, I can only hope and pray that you will continue to be my co-pilot.
Somewhere between the mechanical world and the spiritual realm that surround me, it is the organic that brings me the only comfort. The rise and fall of your chest may as well be a million seaside sunsets. I catch myself drifting, lulled by the peaceful repetition of each movement.
Again, I never fathomed that something so “simple” …how quickly and unexpectedly things can gain or lose their meaning.
I made sure to eat three times today. As I am not sleeping, I need something to keep me going for you. I even got some cookies. I tasted nothing. My stomach cramped. I didn’t feel it. The road poured ahead of me. I didn’t see it.
Nothing. There is nothing but this music and the rise and fall and the feeling that I never want either to end.
I am not sure where these words are coming from. I have drawn deeper into myself than, perhaps, I ever have. My motions are mechanical. I’m not sure what is guiding my physical movements. From soul to paper, I don’t feel attached to the space between, and, as I write, it takes me further and further away.
Where am I going? What is happening? Are you taking me with you? I am coming. Wherever you are and wherever this body is, I feel myself drifting somewhere in between.
I’m not sure that these words will make sense to anyone else at any other time, myself included, but, as I write, it is all I can do.
I have been emotionally stripped down. This is as raw as I come.
I’m not sure when they will pull me from your room. It may literally take that. I don’t feel capable of leaving you on my own.
I have no concept of time. I know that a good bit of time has passed from my first word to this one, but it could as easily been a minute as a year. What does it matter?
The rise and fall. The steady rolls of your breaths and the jumps between of your heart. I may experience the beauty or profundity of such things, but, as I bear record here, it will always serve as some form of remembrance in the future, whether it is a tear on my cheek or a curl on your lips, only time can tell.
Time. Time. Even letters look foreign. Words sound garbled. I feel as if somehow I have already known you for an eternity. Or maybe it was only a second. What is time, anyway? It simultaneously means nothing and everything to me right now. As it carries on this moment, it means nothing, but thinking moments into the future make my head spin. All I have is this one, and in this one, you are here, and, for now, THAT is all that matters.
My head quickly fills with horrific thoughts if I let it ponder beyond this second. What if I never hear your voice again? What if you never even read these chaotic words? What if …blank. Fortunately, my mind has pulled me back to now. There is enough time to worry about the future if it comes to that. All that matters now is this moment and the fact that you are still in it.
My eyes draw up. In that instant, your eyes flutter open. I don’t know if you saw me. Words can’t describe what I saw. Not even now. I suppose that this proves that there truly are no words for what I feel when our eyes meet, and I think, no, I know that that’s okay. I know what I feel, and I believe that you do, too, so why waste time struggling with an explanation that surpasses words? Time. We’re back to that. I suppose the future could be worse. It could be the already determined past, and all those wasted moments.
“I want to feel you. I need to hear you. You are the light that is leading me to the place where I find peace. You are the light unto my soul. You are my movements, you are my everything. And how can I stand here with you and not be moved by you? You still my heart, and you steal my breath away. Would you take me in? Take me deeper now.”
I wrote as fast as this pen and hand would move, trying to pick up the pieces before they were laid out. I didn’t know the lyrics as well as I thought I did. Maybe that isn’t exactly what it said, but that was all that I heard.
And, now, as the physical sleepiness sets in, I feel myself being drawn back, back into this world, which somehow, stands still, suspended, and all there is is you. I don’t want these eyes to close. I fear the next thing that I see. But, for now…
You ARE the DJ! I should not have feared the next thing I saw. I looked up. Your eyes. I know that you saw me this time. I reached for your hand. You grabbed mine. I tried to adjust. Tighter. “My hands are holding you,” pour out over the speakers. I hear you, baby. I hear you.
I don’t know what is happening, but after these moments, I feel overwhelming peace. Somehow, it is okay, and I don’t know how, but it is.
I got lost in your blue eyes, your warmth, your touch, and I transcended. I’m not sure where we went, but it was not here, and it is okay. For now, at least, fear is gone. It is okay. Enough words for now. Time for some peaceful, quiet, wordless moments with you before sleep.
Thank you so much for this post. I live thousands of miles away in the UK and came across it by chance while trying to look for comfort. My partner, my love, the only person who I believe truly understood me, took his own life on January 8th after suffering from depression. I had no idea when I left for work that morning that I wouldn’t see him again. It is so hard trying to go on without him, as you so rightly say I have lost my co-pilot. I feel you truly understand how I’m feeling and I thank you for putting it into such beautiful words.