Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last Day Of 2011, My Last Year as Arthur's Wife.

I say goodbye to 2011, and I say goodbye to Arthur, for the first time. Goodbye, my Husband, goodbye our Earthly life as husband and wife. I loved you then, I love you now, I love you forever.

In the turmoil of grief this record stopped on 18 July 2011 because on 19 July 2011, the unthinkable happened. Two of our beloved dogs, the litter-brothers Ajax and Stamp, got out of the yard. Despite my desperate searching, I have not found them. The grief of their loss, the broken promise to Arthur in his final hours of life that I would care for our dogs, the endless fruitless search, has sapped me and brought me to the brink of total despair, and pitched me into endless pain.

I am still staying with my Mother. I have not the energy to move out. I know I must put my grief on hold to search for our dogs or I am useless to them. I know their Mum and Dad, little Chelsea and Trafford miss them terribly, as do I.

When I asked and prayed and cried to Arthur for help in finding them, and he was not able to help me, I knew finally how alone I was. I think his eternal energies are for keeping them safe and being with his son, Anthony. With his Downs Syndrome, Anthony sadly has dementia, and he is now in a special purpose nursing home run by the government for people with intellectual disability. It is a good place but I see in Anthony that failing strength I saw Arthur go through, though without any dementia. I know Arthur needs to use anything he can from Heaven for Anthony. He knows I am strong.

I miss Arthur like the heart misses blood.

Each morning, in the haze between sleep and wakefulness, my first thought is a prayer for the soul of my beloved Arthur, and the second a prayer that this be the day I find Ajax and Stamp.

Christmas Eve was too sad to write about until now. I always lit candles and by their light Arthur and I ate Arthur's favourite treat, fruit mince pies and drank  a glass of port wine as we listened to Christmas Carol records, with our dogs sitting next to us. In preparation I always decorated the house and set the Manger scene under the tree and a Star on top.

I would join in the carols and Arthur would hold me. It was a time for just him and me and our dogs with love. Christmas Eve was our special time together.

This year my Mum visited my brother on Christmas Eve. I was alone, with Chelsea and Trafford, and Mum's little dog Shep. I lit the big lavender candle that was at Arthur's funeral service. I found two fruit mince pies and a tiny glass of Scotch. I put on carols on You Tube with the laptop, the ones we always listened to. I held Arthur's suit jacket, the one he always wore on ANZAC Day with his medals that I had sewn in place many years ago. I sat Chelsea and Trafford with me, and just remembered.

I remembered the Christmases past, Arthur's smile, the children opening presents, Xmas dinners at restaurants for us all, baking for Xmas, decorations, trees, his arms about me, his kiss and the way he said he loved me.  I remembered holding him when he was too weak to hold me, and the last Christmas in 2010 when I sought the best seafood, Alaskan Crab, prawns and oysters, cold meats, salads and ice-cream, all set in a tempting cold buffet.

My Mother, my son Jason, Arthur and me, enjoyed a lovely informal Xmas lunch. Jason hooked up the laptop and I located You-Tube videos from England. Arthur saw his home town of Brightlingsea, historical videos of Manchester United Football Club, and many other things he was amazed and happy to see. It was a magical, special day, the last we Christmas we ever shared together.

This Christmas Eve I held his suit jacket to my breast and cried out the tears I have held back since the day he died, or at least some of them; the others are still behind the dam wall, that is flood I too much fear.

The year 2011 ends, a part of my life ends. I go from wife to widow and happiness has died within me.  The clock moves on and drags me with it, away from my old life, into the one I do not want.

The only happiness for me now is to find Ajax ad Stamp.

May 2012 bring that comfort.


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