Monday, January 11, 2010

Message to Michael

Originally uploaded by takwaterloo

Here is a letter I began writing to Michael last night, after taking my sleeping pill. Michael has historically told me that I say, and do, some odd things if I don't go to sleep soon after taking my pill. There was the night I tried to draw a tattoo on his back, and didn't want to take no for an answer. Today when I opened my laptop, I found that I had written this post but had not sent it. Prior to publishing it I thought it best to read through it first. Well, it's a damn good thing I did. I was going on and on about some pretty personal stuff usually reserved for just Michael and I. I sat here laughing out loud thinking, man, what if I had posted this last night without editing it. So, with some editing done, here it is. I have tried to maintain the integrity of the post, as it is supposed to be about me talking in real time. But when so many of my family and friends keep reminding me that they are reading, I find myself being a bit more hesitant to say certain things. Don't worry, I will get past that soon enough.

My Love,

Night is here once again, and I can't avoid your absence. I sit here on our bed, feeling empty, feeling sorrow, wanting sleep. Last night I didn't fall asleep until five thirty in the morning. I don't think I have slept more than four hours on any given night since you were taken from me. I keep trying to find ways to settle my aching heart, to clear my cluttered mind, and to relax my knotted body.

I'm not sure what to do with myself. I find myself struggling to breathe at times. It feels like asthma, but I know it's not. It's almost as if the air that is afforded to me, is no longer healthy. It's polluted, and my lungs are dark and sore. I find myself taking deep long breaths, almost gasping for air. I know there is nothing medically wrong with me, just grief.

Should I go to the doctor? What should I ask for. I'm already taking so much medication. I suppose what's one more damn pill, right? I sit here and think of all the medication you took during the past two years. In fact I still have it all in the kitchen cabinet. I was supposed to find a disposal place for all of it, but it has become just one more thing that I never get around to doing.

I know I have made progress during these four months. I'm certainly not as pitiful as I was two months ago, or three. Yet I still just seem to sit here, my head lost among the clouds and fog.

Michael, I just went upstairs, grabbed a bite or two of brownies that Arianne made, served myself a cup of pumpkin ice cream, and got me an ice cold diet soda. And it isn't exactly summer weather here at home. It is actually damn cold down in our room. The ice cream reminds me of the spice ice cream you make. I'm going to look for the recipe, as Arianne says she wants to try making it.

I wish I would have paid more attention to how you made some of your Senegalese foods for us. I miss your cooking so much. Late last night I started watching a quiet little film about a down on his luck, anti-establishment, non-capitalist, going no where in life, divorced dad. He shares an apartment with a roommate who is from Senegal. When the roommate goes into a diabetic coma, his sister arrives from Senegal to help care for her brother. Oh this really made me miss having you sitting beside me, making comments about how their accents were wrong, the clothing wasn't right, the music, the dance, the food. Well, they got the language right, Wolof. It's funny but I was able to pick up some of the words. It really made me feel close to you. At one point Arianne came down to my room to check on me, and I was so giddy about watching something related to Senegal, so related to you.

In two weeks the kids and I will be spending the weekend in Big Sur, your dream place. We are gathering with all your Peace Corp friends for a 'Michael Lowrie Memorial Weekend.' I think all the regulars will be there. I haven't spoken to anybody organizing this in quite some time, so I'm a bit clueless about who is actually coming, and what exactly is on the agenda.

I've rented a two bedroom cabin at the nice lodge you like. All the gang will be there. We can't let on that this is a big group type thing. I guess the establishment frowns on big groups taking over the facilities. I'm thinking of taking a handful of your ashes to let everyone do a little scattering for you. This is you favorite place, and where you initially thought of being scattered. I'm still going to see what options we have down there. I would love to find a bench to put in your honor, just like you wanted. If it can't happen, then it may just well become the Michael W. Lowrie Memorial Picnic Bench.

I know we decide to not hyphenate our last names, but now I'm wishing we had. It would give me a bit more connection to you. I'm going to think about looking into a name change that will include it.

Anyway, your Birthday is exactly one week away. I can't believe how calm I am about this. I'm usually out the weekend before shopping for that perfect gift. Last year I got you that watch, remember? I had purchased one for Fred for Christmas, and you really liked it. I liked seeing it on your wrist. I loved running my hands over your wrists. I guess I'll need to think of what to do with all of your watches. I don't wear a watch, but I do like picking yours up and carrying it around. It reminds me of how you were willing to take off your socks for sex, but not your watch. I always wondered if you were checking to see how long I could last.

Anyway Michael, I'm also a bit worried about your mother's visit this next weekend. We had previously planned to get together at our home to begin the painful process of going through your things. I'm sure that she will bring the girls, and that Bobby will want to take the train over to hang out with all of us. I just pray that this is all done from a very loving and sensitive way, which I'm sure it will be. I don't want to feel like a den of thieves broke into our home and ransacked through all of our drawers. I suppose it would be a good time to hide, or get rid of some of your "Adult Viewing" DVD's, or start looking for any possible adult toys that we may have forgotten about.

Michael you were supposed to supply me with a list of all your personal items, and who you want things to go to. As far as I can see, the list was never done. I'm not sure how your family will be reacting to all of this. And I certainly need to anticipate what kind of limit setting we will need. I really don't want all of the family here, expecting to be rummaging through our underwear drawers, and very personal paperwork. Maybe I'm worrying too much.

Michael, I finally got to work in my garden. It looks much better than it did last week, and when the weather changes, I'll get back out there again.

I love you, and miss you so much. Please help me fall asleep.


1 comment:

  1. I hope you did get to sleep in the end, Dan. It's good to get angry sometimes, even if the emotion doesn't sit comfortably with you. Let it out, vent ... we are listening. I really hope the family visiting goes alright. It took my sister and I a whole year before we were able to go through my Mom's bedroom, and we spent the whole day crying. Please stipulate what is off bounds to them up front so that there are no awkward conversations to be had ... e.g. no one is to go in that cupboard, or, I am keeping a, b and c. If you don't, you will be overcome with bitterness afterwards, and that will be harder for you to leave behind than this anger.

    Plus you have the memorial weekend ... wow, that's a lot to get through on top of Michael's birthday. I'm not surprised you can't sleep.

    I'm not sure if I believe in a God anymore ... on the days that I do, I tend to think of him as "Q" in Star Trek!

    Love to you