Monday, June 3, 2013


I have a file on my computer named sensitive. It contains all the texts between Dave and me on our phones right up until the night before the morning he died.

I looked at them for the first time the other day. I read every single one. I hadn't forgotten how much we loved each other, I just hadn't seen such visual proof of it in so long. He loved me so much. I loved him. We had such a comfortable, open, easy way with each other.

Seeing that felt like a ripping in my chest. I couldn't breathe and then I didn't want to breathe. Crying didn't ease the pain and I worried I'd never be able to stop crying.

I can't believe he's gone and with him, the me I used to be. I can't believe WE are gone. Our house, our life, our stories. All of it ended on June 4, 2011.

I can't believe he'll never text me again. It feels like I'll never believe it. How could I believe that all of that is gone? It feels like I blinked and when I opened my eyes, I was here, in this new life. We didn't deserve this. I hate that this happened to us.

Tomorrow will be the second anniversary of that terrible day.

I am still committed to living fully because he can't. I still know that he'd want me to be happy again and he'd rejoice in knowing that I had made the rest of my life worth living.

But, oh this pain is so big. So big that at times there isn't room for much else.

I still will wish this anniversary to be over quickly and that my thoughts won't linger too long in the dark spiral of those last moments of his life.

On the other hand, tomorrow I will celebrate not only that I've survived this but that I loved and was loved.


  1. Thank you for this post. It is such a familiar, straight forward reality of mixed emotions. I always find that the anticipation of the big dates is worse than the actual date, so I hope tomorrow will not be as painful for you as today.

  2. Really tough stuff, always. Sadiversary dates are even tougher. I too, loved and WAS loved....and have found after having a zillion lunches and dinners now in the aftermath of my loss, that many, even most women, cannot say that. Makes me sad. Makes me even more confused that a marriage, MY marriage, that was thriving and overflowing in love was ended, must like that. No goodbye, no warning. Done. As social security so poorly put it in print, "Marriage ended by death 2-15-11". Made me want to vomit. How cruel to put it out there like that, even if it was true. At that point (3 weeks post loss) I argued with those words on the paper telling it that "this isn't true, I'm still married in my heart..." But that is not the case anymore. My marriage did indeed end by death. I am no longer married. I am a widow. I am a single. I am not a pair. I feel like a spare. Ick!

  3. I miss the me I used to be too, the we that was and is no more. Every aspect of my life is changed, from what and how I eat to how I sleep (or don't) to thoughts first thing in the morn and last thing at night, to where I'm gonna live and on and on. I still find it amazing to have no inkling that it could ever be like this, this world so void of what once was.

    Hold on to the thought that you were loved and returned that love, many never experience what you had. And I do believe that if you had it once, you can have it again.
    That keeps me going, even tho I'm nowhere near letting someone in again. Take care of you, especially tomorrow. It's good to remember what was, but I know that I need to move forward too.

  4. Text messages...

    I’m coming up on 3 yrs next week...
    I still have both our old flip phones and I occasionally power them up and re-read the text messages. (Just to torment myself...)

    I remember staring at my phone and crying, at about the 1 month mark.
    I had gone shopping with girlfriends for the day in the US. (I’m in Canada and live about an hour from the US border, so occasionally we take a day to hang out and shop.) Because of the extra cost of texting from another country, nobody does any texting until we get back to Canada. We had just passed through customs on our way home, and everybody waited for their cell services to switch back, then started texting their spouses to say they were back etc...

    Out of habit I initially grabbed my phone to text Dave, and then just stared at it realizing AGAIN that he wasn’t at the other end anymore. Nobody cared when I was getting home except for the dog. I felt my heart break once again. The tears streamed down my face and into my lap as I stared at that stupid phone. (Thankfully it was dark so nobody noticed and I didn’t have to explain why I was sobbing.)

    Two days ago we all went shopping again.
    After writing this comment out I just realized that I didn’t have that same pain, or feelings when coming back across the border.
    I now have hugely mixed emotions over that.

    This is just one mess of a roller coaster ride we’re one.
    I also just had a flashback/realization while writing this that I dreamt of Dave last night.
    (Yesterday my brother & I were going through Dave’s carpentry tools in my garage. This must have been the trigger.)
    I don’t remember much of the dream except that my brother and Dave were there and doing some work together, and Dave walked up the stairs behind my brother and just smiled at me. I just remember that feeling again of relief that he was alive. And I specifically remember thinking that I could feel coldness coming up the stairs, and I felt his touch on my arm as he walked by and I could smell him as well. I was trying to convince myself that is was real. All my senses were working and it was real!
    (I’m glad I just remembered the dream, but I’m still stuck in the nightmare of reality...)

  5. I've been trying to turn off our old flip-phones, which I've been paying on for 4 years now. I have some texts from him saved on my phone from the last few days of the trip he never returned from. I actually recently took pictures of the texts, and it worked well. I can "see" and "hear" his words by looking at the pictures. Almost ready to turn mine off, but I still can't turn his off - I need to be able to call his number and hear his voice. We took thousands of pictures in our short 9 years together, but just a handful of short video clips. Wish I had more of his voice....

  6. Thank you for this post. I began to type out the years of text messaging between my partner and I..there is so much to be captured in the daily banter. A question for you, how did you go about getting the text off of the phone? did you find a program to upload it? I am so afraid to plug it in for fear of losing all the data, Any help would be appreciated.

  7. It's painstaking, and takes forever, but it works. My friend took a screenshot of every screen of texts and then sent the screen shots via email to get them on my computer.
    There are other ways to do it, but this one was free and had less chance of losing the texts.
    Good luck. I know how incredibly hard it is.

  8. I just used my digital camera to take the pictures of the texts, and then just hooked the camera to my computer and downloaded them. I'm not a computer expert, but this is one thing I watched my husband do, and I managed to figure it out.

  9. Cassie this resonated with me so much. My 2 year is also coming up - July 13th. Im dreading it, and it still seems surreal. Don and I had the funniest, flirtiest, cutest text exchanges - and I dont have any of them. His phone was disconnected about a month after he died, and my phone somehow deleted the text messages when I upgraded it unknowingly. How I wish like hell I had a "sensitive" file.

  10. I found letters that were written to me from my spouse and crds from when we were dating. I can totally relate to this spiral. Instaed of being happy it just reminds me of the love I lost. It will be 3mos out tomorrow after a 15 mo brain cancer battle and a 12 year relationship. I only pray something so beautiful as texts, letters, etc can be that again in time