“Can you feel this smell?”
“Smell of death. It is coming.”
I closed my eyelids. Forcefully, as if I would like to squeeze my eye sockets deep into my head. I was soaking with a cold sweat. And yet I didn’t want to wake up. This dream, even though a terrible nightmare it was, let me to speak with my husband.
My husband was already gone. I couldn’t feel his substance. Touch him or bite into his lips. I couldn’t hug his soft skin. But I could speak with him. I didn’t want to do this in a real world, that is why I was sleeping, not to be deemed mad. This is why I was sleeping. I kept sleeping as long as possible.
“Do you remember the day on which you were born?”
“Of course not, Honey. I was too small to remember this.”
“Do you think that since I am old enough I will remember the day of my death?”
My husband’s death struck us like a thunderbolt. We weren’t prepared for it. No one from the family expected such a news. The doctors decided, made their verdict. They just assumed that there is nothing else they can do. Metastases did their job. They told us to wait for a miracle. Death was supposed to be a miracle in our case.
At the beginning the disease, sentence, everything… all of it was a tabu topic for us. We tried to live a normal life. We just kept pretending that nothing had happened. We both made a cosy entrapment called luck. I could see that my husband is slowly passing away. He could see that I am not able to come to terms with it. And still we did not reveal our feelings. Why? Because it meant to allow this scenario unfold. But still, it did not make sense to continue our internal fight.
“I wonder if there, on the other side, they will allow me to come back to you sometimes?”
“Stop it, now you are still here. You will recover and look after me here.”
“Do not worry, I will not scare you during the night, if you decide to make a new life for you.”
It was my husband who would always initiate our conversations about the disease and death. I think he did not have much to lose. At the beginning I was flinching at the very mention of the word ‘death’. I felt something very strange and unpleasant in this word. Something, which is uncontrollable and makes me panic that I will not be able to stop it. Over time we accepted this situation. The death was like a person who will arrive at our door and take my husband to some other place, where he will wait until it comes back for me. I know, it was childish to imagine the end like this. And still. We started to believe that death is only a temporary state. Something better was awaiting us on the other side.
“Will you promise me something?”
“Of course, Honey”.
“On the day of my death you will wear this flowery dress. I love it when you wear it. I love how you look in it.
“I will put it on”.
We had this conversation couple of days before his death. It is said that one can subconsciously feel many things. Women feel that they are pregnant. People feel that they found their love for life. Sick people feel that their flame is burning out. This is how our lives go.
My husband was dying in huge pain. Painkillers, which had been sustaining his well being, lost their effect. Even though it was very hard for me, I put on the promised dress. I knew that it was his death, not mine. He had the right to suffer, not me. I could only miss him. I did not want to suffer due to his departure. I was selfish.
Yearning turns out to be stronger. This is why I go to sleep immediately after dusk. I wake up when I have to. People around keep repeating that I should start to live my own life. And I believe that life is only a stop. And that we will meet soon. This is why I cannot forget him even for a moment.
/ foto: www.freeimages.com/