Walking into this room, my body begins to shake. I whisper to myself, “You can do this.” The room is cold and damp. I walk over to the window that was left open. A cool breeze flows through. I inhale deeply. My hands tremble as I close the window shut. I glance over to my left. The bedroom. The door is halfway open. I begin to walk towards it.
My feet feel as if they are in wet sand. Each step seems to take hours. I ease the door open and am smacked in the face with this scent. Your scent. My breathing becomes shallow. I slam the door close. Leaning against the door, I am unable to hold in my emotions. The tears stream down my face. I watch them fall to the ground like leaves. I fall with them.
I look around. The space is dark. But I can still see. Vivid images of You. I can still hear You. Laughing at Your own corny jokes, cursing out the pizza guy because he forgot Your extra sauce, Your soft moans as I caress You. Your screams when I surprised You with Your ring. My God…Your ring. My fiancé. My wife to be. Before everything happened. Before my world was turned upside down.
I sit here in the tux that I should have been wearing on our wedding day. The tux You picked out. Cream with black trim. An inside joke of ours. Our first date. Coffee and a walk in the park. That day, I fell in love. You…were…my…EVERYTHING. My reason for breathing. My reason to be a better man. I would say You were my Spades partner…but You were definitely trash.
I laugh softly to myself. I haven’t laughed since…since that day. I haven’t been able to breathe since that call. Your panicked voice replays in my head over and over again. The soft whispers of “I love you” haunt me hourly. The background screams. My silence. That’s what hurts the most. My damn silence! My inability to speak to You in those last moments. What do you say to the love of your life as they are preparing for death? What words could I have come up with to express the pain and disbelief? What could I have said to give You comfort…to make You feel safe?
“Completely selfish!” I scolded.
I was thinking of myself when You called. Thinking that this was all a joke. There was no way this could be real. Maybe You had cold feet. You weren’t ready to be truly mine forever. But when I realized it was real…it was too late. The call disconnected. You were gone. Forever. I never was able to watch the news story. Never spoke to any reporters. Facing your parents was my own hell that I avoided. Your funeral…a distant memory though it was just today. The same church. The same pastor. The same guests. But instead of joining our lives together…I had to say goodbye…to You.
Standing up…I wonder aimlessly to the record player. The last record You played is still there. Music begins to flood this space as I find myself on the ground again. “How did I get here? Everything was perfect. This was our love song.” And now, I was on the wrong side.