Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

Dear Tommy,

Why is it so hard for me to remember my dreams with you in them? I never have a hard time remembering dreams. Last night I was dreaming about you until Avery woke me up. I tried so hard to remember the dream, but I couldn't. What I could remember was the feeling that I had during the dream. It was kind of peaceful. I think it's the way you may feel or at least the way I'd feel if you were here with me now. I went back to sleep hoping to see you again and I did. And part of this dream I did remember. You were standing there in your Camies and I was so happy. I also had that same feeling as in the other dream. In it someone from your Command told me that you were getting deployed right away to replace another injured Marine again. I cried out, "No! I just got him back! You can't take him from me!" He replied that it was only for a few months and he Promised me you would come home again. You said it would be ok and you had to go. I held you so tightly. I didn't want to let go, not ever, but with the promise that you would come home safe again-- I let go... I woke up thinking you were still alive, just deployed. And then as I became more oriented with what was going on, I realized that it was just a dream and there was no deployment, no chance to hold you again. I crumbled inside and out. I was glad to have a few minutes by myself before the kids woke up to compose myself.


Today was Memorial Day and this year it signified something much deeper to me and to all those who knew and loved you. It wasn't just "those men and women who lost their lives serving this great country" that we remembered, the unknown names and faces that we all are grateful for, but have no real connection to. This year, this day, was very different for us. This day 3 weeks ago is when you left this life after serving our country and struggling for so long. Today it was YOU, Tommy, that we all had on our minds. It was YOU that we honored and thanked for the ultimate sacrifice.
It was YOU that our hearts were aching for. It was YOU that we remembered and missed beyond words. It is YOU, Tommy who made this day more personal than any of us ever wanted it to be. You will always be remembered for the good, for the honor, for the love, for the sacrifice. We love you!


After I was told you died I eventually was able to make my way into our house and I sat in our new recliner only to camp out on it for most of the next week. It was only a day two after 'they' came to the door that I sat in that chair talking to the Chaplin, saying how I don't want to feel it; I don't want to deal with it at all. But I know that the only way for me to heal is to just sit in it; just sit in the pain and feel it for a while or I would never have the chance to heal. He said that if he just bottle up what I said and tell all the Marines that and make them understand then they would be better off. But you know, Tommy, I'm not doing that right now. I'm being just like most of the Marines he was talking about by pushing those feelings down-- so far down that I don't have to even think about them for parts of the day.
My cousin sent me something that says "Life is all about how you handle Plan B." In her note to me she wrote, "Plan A may not have worked out the way you expected, so it's on to Plan B. Good luck with Plan B." My thoughts on this? Well, if you must ask, I say thanks for wishing me 'good luck' because Lord knows I need it! I want to sit and have a tantrum like a 3 year old and say 'I do Not want a Plan B! Give me back Plan A!' I mean she is right, you know. I can not change the past. One of these days I WILL have to eventually accept the fact that you are not deployed. I will have to start living Plan B, but for now? For now I'd like to think I can sit somewhere in between Plans A & B. I am not ready to handle Plan B even if I'm now already living it.
There was a wife I knew from your first deployment that contacted me to send her and her husband's condolences when they found out about your death. She also sent me a link to another widow's blog. It's good to see what other (young) widows have to say. Just as I find writing therapeutic I also find reading very helpful, too. She had something on the saying "This too shall pass." And it reminded me of when you first deployed to Iraq in 2006. Katie L. came over one day soon after and gave me a card (which sang the chorus of "I will survive") and a plaque which said "This too shall pass, Now would be nice." After we moved here I realized that it broke in the box I had packed it in. Meaningful? Maybe, but probably not-- I just thought I'd add that part. The thing is I wish that 'this' would pass. I would love for the pain to pass; love for life to pass to be quite honest with you. I would love to wake up and have this nightmare of a life be completely over and happier days to be here yet again.

Loving you Always,

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