Friday, March 2, 2012

I Can't Believe He's Gone

My soul mate of 17 years passed away quietly in his sleep yesterday morning. I thought I'd prepared myself for it, but had no way of knowing what a big hole it would leave. Earl had been such a big part of my life. He was full of life. Always looked out for me, worried over me, protected me. Even in ill health he often thought of me first. He taught me so much and was so good to me. I can't imagine life without him, even now that he's gone.

No more suffering for him. During the week I remained in the hospital with him his grandson, Father Jason, was also there. Praying over Earl daily, making sure Earl had his ticket to heaven. We also played his favorite song, My Way, by Frank Sinatra. The first time I hummed the tune in his ear he responded with a squeeze of my hand, and a hint of a smile because I'm tone deaf. But I could tell he appreciated my efforts. Later, Father Jason played the Frank Sinatra version from his Ipod.

He never really gained full consciousness but he could respond with a nod of his head, a squeeze of my hand. Once he patted me on the head, his way of saying it was going to be okay. That tore me up. But it also gave me peace because he knew he wasn't alone. That was important to me. No one should die alone in some sterile hospital room if it can be helped. The hospital staff was so helpful and accommodating to us. They moved a cot into the room so I could spend the nights there.

The only comfort I have is knowing that he's not suffering anymore. The last year he has been through so much, and been in so much pain. We often prayed for God to take him in his sleep, to end the suffering. One morning before Father Jason arrived from Colorade I saw Earl make the sign of the cross. I asked him if he wanted to pray. He nodded, so I gave it my best try.

I took his hand and began, "Please, God, look out for Earl, and end his pain. Please welcome him into heaven. Please don't let him haunt me (as he threatened to do many times), and give him back his voice so he can sing again. His legs so he can golf again. And okay, he can haunt me just a little." To which Earl smiled.

Earl had a beautiful smile. I'm going to miss so much about him.


Jenn3128 said...

I'm so sorry. I'll be sending comforting thoughts your way.

Leni said...

Keeping you in my prayers.

Nancy Bristow said...

Debbie/Tory...It's so hard and I don't believe any of us can really prepare...expect it and brace a bit maybe but we really can't know until it happens.

You know grief is a process and will come in it's own way and time. I'm glad Earl's at peace now and could squeeze your hand.

Remember how important it is to take good care of yourself as you put one foot in front of the other and take things a day at a time.

We don't forget the death of loved ones but somewhere during the process cherished moments pop up and make us laugh and we're left with less pain. You're in my thoughts. ~Nancy

Virginia C said...

I am so very sorry, my dear! I am weeping with you--please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers. In many ways, that beautiful smile will always be with you--keep that thought close to your heart. Please take care of yourself and allow your family to show you how much they love you and want to ease your hurt.

Unknown said...

i am so sorry for your loss. i know that your probably in a state of "frozenness" as my mother says, but i'm sure that your family will help and they will be a great comfort during this time. also if you need to talk you can contact me at anytime and i will get back to you asap.

again i am very sorry for your pain and loss of loved one and i hope you recieve the love and peace of God during this time.

tammy ramey

June M. said...

I am so sorry for your loss. This is nothing you can really prepare for, but at least he is not in any pain or discomfort any longer. My deepest sympathies to you and the family.

June M. said...

I am so sorry for your loss. This is nothing you can really prepare for, but at least he is not in any pain or discomfort any longer. My deepest sympathies to you and the family.

Tory Richards said...

You are all so wonderful! Your comments lifted me and I thank you for that.

Designs by Dawn Marie said...

Oh sweetie, I'm so sorry. There's nothing anybody can do to take away the pain. Just know I'm sending love, strength and friendship to you as you mourn Earl. Keep his memory alive, do something he loved to make his spirit soar!


Amy J said...

Oh no! I am so sorry to hear about your loss! You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Shoshanna Evers said...

Tory I am so very sorry for your loss. You are in my prayers.