“Some days I’m glad he died, rather than lived as a vegetable, in a coma… does that make me a bad person?”
“No… it just means you loved him.”
How many times did we say, in the ICU, that we wanted him to wake up? But whole, please. Then we would retract it- as whole as possible. A limp, a speech slur, learning to walk again.. any of that was fine…. but no less than that. If we wasn’t whole, or almost whole, then we could let him go… we had to.
I think we were lieing. I know I was. I was have taken those chocolate brown eyes opening, focusing… I would have taken him any way he came.
I’m almost disgusted in myself, every time I think it. I’ve only said it out loud a handful of times.
How can you say you are glad someone died, no matter what the parameters that surround that emotion are?
Most people understand, when I tell them… but it still leaves a bitter taste in my mouth, a rock of shame in my stomach.
If it came down to the choice of having him die, or having him alive but only just… breathing, but not there. Severely brain damaged. Not the Tony we knew and loved.
Or, worse again… there. Conscious and alert, but unable to physically react, unable to move at all.
If it came to a choice between him dieing, and that… I’m glad he died.
And I know he would have been too- because we spoke about it, many times. “Turn me off,” he’d say. “I wouldn’t want to live like that.”
I hope he felt the same way, when it came down to it. I guess he must have.
I received an email from a woman, months ago, who was in a similar situation to me…. a few months before, her life had exploded when her husband was badly injured through an accident. He lived, but was severely physically and mentally effected.
I was so in awe of this woman, her strength, her grace, her presence of mind. I was so jealous, so hungry to be her…. she still had her husband, no matter what condition he be in.
At the same time, I was sick with relief that I was not her, that my husband was gone and I could move on, start again… let go.
I’ve wondered, many times, what would I have done if Tony had survived, brain damaged and unable to care for himself?
I would have run away, to begin with, I’m certain of that. At least with a funeral it was over… had it continued, the pressure would have been too much, too much steam and heat that would have eventually exploded.
But I would have come back. I’m almost positive of that. Because even now, I love him so much… just to sit by him, feel the warmth of his skin… that would have been enough. Just his presence would have been enough to sustain love.
I’m almost sure of it.