My friend Tanja recently wrote a letter to her husband on her blog-I found such solace in reading it that I decided to steal the idea to commemorate the two year mark since my husband’s passing. Please indulge me this one time:
Don, Today marks two years since I last kissed you, hugged you or told you I loved you. I am terribly grateful that I was able to do that one last time. I am thankful that our relationship allowed for constant affirmation of love. You have been missed so much these past two years, yet your legacy has remain a constant reminder of your life and what it stood for.
You wouldn’t recognize the boys at this point. Our oldest son is in college and thriving. He has a lovely girlfriend and I find that he loves her as he saw you love me. There is adoration and pride whenever he speaks of her and they seem to be the very best of friends. He reflects so much of your spirit. He has taken the responsibility of “head of the house” yet still allowed himself the luxury of being a young man. He has bought a new car—which I find to be quite ugly, but is his pride and joy. We tease him that his new car is a toaster on wheels and that parking it in the garage is a problem because when the “Pop Tarts” pop from the top, they will hit the roof of the garage. You would not have liked the vehicle either, but would have understood his feelings toward the car because you felt the same way about that ’79 Camero (which, by the way, was MUCH cooler). He plays your Martin guitar often even though he doesn’t play with ‘the band’ anymore. He loves that guitar and takes special care of it. You would be proud.
Our youngest has had trouble adjusting to middle school. We have been racking our brains trying to figure it all out. I especially wish you were here to deal with the issues at school, so that I could continue my professional relationship there. You had the ability to make the rigid more open-minded and boy are we dealing with "rigid" right now. I would like to blame his non-conformity to the time of year or his aversion to adjusting to new situations, but I know what you would say. You would say, “Marsha, he is YOU---duh---this middle school stuff is not “fun” enough for him. Just relax, he will come around and hopefully school won’t ruin him” and of course, you would be right. He has become very sensitive to the spiritual aspects of his life. You would be proud of how he responds in church when he is moved. We sang together in church last month and it was a moment of great pride. He has an amazing voice and I think will discover this to be a talent to cultivate. In band, he is playing the drums, following in his brother’s footsteps. He still views life as “glass half-full” and remains true to his word no matter what.
Chelsie misses you. She did from the beginning. Even the vet told us that she was in mourning. We attempted to make her feel better by getting her a doggy companion who, in turn, bit Riley and….well---ended up in a new home. I don’t think Chelsie minded too much. She enjoys being “top dog”.
We moved to a new home not long after you left us. We live in the community we talked about moving to for years. My only real regret is that you didn’t get to live here. You would have loved the walking paths and the sporting opportunities so close to the house. We are enjoying riding our bicycles and walking to the baseball field. The house is a two-story structure which wouldn’t have thrilled you, but you would have liked the neighbors, as they are friends we have known for years. The ping-pong table is set up downstairs, but doesn’t get used as often as it should. We do think of you each time we play.
We are thankful of our memories, and strive to live for today and have hope for a future. The love legacy you left has allowed us to continue to grow through our grief. We miss you, but cherish the many wonderful memories that have allowed us to speak of you often in a loving manner. Your life has allowed us to continue ours. I get emails from Erica every once in a while. They always make me smile as she reminisces snapshots of memories from IP. Your mother is still a major part of our lives. We don’t get to see her as much as we would like, but that is because of our busy schedules. I know she misses you and your dad, but has become quite independent. She has even met some widow friends of her own. You would be proud of her, just as we are. She is a great source of comfort to the boys and to me.
Though there have been some disappointments in the male-role-model department and some promises that haven’t been fully fulfilled, I believe the boys have found their way. I have had to be enough at times and our oldest has assumed some responsibility. This is not a bad thing. It has made us all more self-sufficient.
We still laugh a lot, play games, root for the Cardinals and the Illini, watch old movies and allow music to continue to define our lives. We think and speak of you daily—always in the most fond and loving manner. We have hope for a future that will be filled with continued love and peace. More than anything, we acknowledge that God has been faithful. He has heard our cries for solace and answered—not always as we expected, but always fully and completely. So on this, our sadiversary, we honor you and the special place you reside in our hearts.