“Yes, I’m sorry,” I said a bit distantly. It had been hard for me to concentrate on anything other than him for the last week. I put aside my project, a half crocheted blanket I had been working on since I got married eight years ago, and sat up.
“It’s okay. Is there anything I can do?”
“No thank you. I’ll be fine.” We both said our goodbye’s after she tried condoling me again. I was glad to hang up the phone and toss it onto the nearby chair. I laid back down, my eyes wandering aimlessly as a haunting numbness saturated my senses.
Images filled my mind pulling at my torn heart and spreading fissures of pain. My husband’s sweet voice speaking softly to me of happiness and love choked my lungs. His gentle kisses were daggers jammed into my heart. His smile lightening his already pale green eyes with laughter anguished my withered soul.
My husband was gone.
He had left me here to cope with life on my own. Though he didn’t leave me on purpose, his death felt like I had been abandoned, deserted. I would not see him, not touch him, not be in the comfort of his arms…ever again. The pain enveloped me until it was so immobilizing that it shifted into the unrelenting numbness. I hadn’t cried yet, the tears just wouldn’t come.
He had been my love, my support, my happiness and my motivation to work hard. His face lit up with his love for me when I walked into the same room as him. He was my source of light, a miracle of sunlight piercing through the darkened clouds. It was a nightmare that I would never wake up from, continuously mocking me, torturing me.
My eyes snapped over to my little girl, her thick blonde curls cascading past her shoulders. Her pale green eyes brimmed with worry, worry a six year-old should never be forced to feel. She leaned over me, hugging me close to her with tears in her eyes. I wrapped her in my arms feeling the sobs escape my throat.
“Mommy, it’s okay. I miss daddy too.”
I hugged my daughter while she comforted me in her tiny arms. Determined to be the comfort a mother should be, I smiled as I let go of her. She was smiling at me with my lips and his eyes.
“Daddy would want you to be happy.”
The truth from her words sliced my chest. He had worked so hard for us to be happy, sacrificing his own happiness at times.
“You’re right, Alexis. He would want us to be happy.”
“Can I show you something?” She asked me batting her long eyelashes, letting a little sunshine coat my heart.
She skipped to the table, humming some indefinable tune then grabbed a piece of paper. She was quickly back at my side lifting the paper for me to see and certainly praise. It was a picture of a mother and daughter holding hands in a grassy field. In the corner was a large sun with a picture of a man inside it smiling. I looked at her in surprise.
“These two are us and that is Daddy watching over us and letting the sun stay over us all of the time.” Her eyes lightened up with her smile, spreading warmth through my body. I pulled her into my arms again.
“I love it.”
She smiled and skipped off to draw another picture. I watched her as she leaned in towards the paper, her eyebrows furrowed in complete concentration. Sunlight emanated from her chasing away the numbness and filling me with love and devotion. My husband would watch over us, never leaving us. He would live on for us, through her.
By Kathy Lipscomb