A family member was taken suddenly last weekend. As with any death, one thinks a lot about life, sees things a little differently for a spell, and some of us, perhaps mostly the crazy ass writers, start to wax poetic. Or maybe, waning. Call it what you will, but today we celebrated a life and said goodbye to a good man, and tonight, I’m maudlin, or maybe just overwhelmed by the outpouring of emotions all around me.
Please stop telling me it’ll get better. It’s been three years, and I still feel empty. I live my life day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute, hoping and praying that it’ll be my last, that I’ll be reunited with the love of my life. Oh, don’t worry about the depression. I don’t have the energy or focus to actually kill myself. Besides, if the doctrine is to be believed, suicide would send me straight to Hell, and I am certain that Paul achieved grace, rising above the material world with golden wings and a halo that could blind the devil himself. I suppose there’s a chance we’re both doomed. Some churches would say so, loving men as we did – loving each other as we did – but I can’t believe that any god who creates a wonderful relationship like Paul and I had would make it evil. Evil has a feel, and when Paul and I were together, it never once felt like temptation from the fallen one. He agreed, my Paul. He’d hold me in his arms, sweaty and pleasantly exhausted, and say, “My dear Eric, if loving you is a sin, then I’m going to stock up on sunscreen tomorrow.”
I never had the heart to tell him there was no sun in Hell, just fire, and torture, and well, he never did have an interest in reading Dante. I used to tell him I loved him despite this, but I knew, and he did too, that I loved him because he was the perfect complement to me, pulling me out of my books long enough to live my own life – our lives – in the real world.
Ah, but I digress. It happens often now. My mind rambles on while my body goes through the motions of the living. I’ve shut down because the pain is too much to bear. It has not made me stronger. I am weak, a child crawling along the worn carpet of life, because I’ve lost the strength to walk. Unlike a burn or cut, this pain, I know, will never end. Not until I do. I gave him my heart, and when he died, he took it with him. I hope he keeps it safe in Heaven. No, I know he still watches over it with the utmost care. Except, with my Paul removed from this life, no matter how much he loved –loves – loved — me, I cannot feel it. I am a void, missing my key part. Not my heart, mind you — not really — but my love, my Paul. My everything.