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Happy Anniversary Baby, I’ve Got You On My Mind (When You’re Widowed Too Young...)

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I want you to know I got through today okay.

Just an hour and a half left. And then it will be tomorrow.

It’s hard to believe I married you 35 years ago today. I don’t know where the time went, but wow, it flew by. Just like everyone told us it would. We were just babies. How could we know? There’s just some things about life you can’t know until you actually know.

Gracie’s wedding last month was beautiful. I hope you saw it in some way or another. I know you were distracted by the “Game of the Century” – LSU VS ALABAMA, but I felt your presence holding me up as I walked down the aisle. Or maybe that was your two beautiful sons. I don’t know for sure. But there was strength.

It made me think a lot about our wedding day. All I can remember was when they dramatically swung open those two big wide double oak doors of Our Lady of Mercy, I looked nervously down the aisle and was so relieved to see you standing on the alter, flanked by your dad, your brother and your best friend.

I don’t know what I expected. Did I think you weren’t going to show up? You RSVP’d that you were planning on attending. So, of course you did. The fine young southern gentleman that you were. A promise keeper to the end.

A lot has changed since you’ve been gone. But also nothing has changed. Everything is still the same, and yet entirely different.

I bought 2 pair of really soft, warm expensive socks that I keep in my nightstand drawer because my feet still get so cold at night. Only now I can’t twine them around your body and make you shriek out in your sleep calling me “popsicle toes!”

I still can’t find the television remote. Ever. I still have to unmake the entire bed and use the flashlight feature on my cell phone to look for it under the covers. It sucks so hard that I can’t blame you for misplacing it. Now, it’s all on me when it’s missing.

Damn it.

I can’t find my cell phone a lot either. A lot of times I have to look for my phone first, just so that I can hunt down the remote.

Did I mention how much I miss the sound of football and basketball blaring as the backdrop of my life 24/7 while you rant at the coaches, players and refs?

By the way, those five children we made….They are still assholes. But they’re also amazingly amazing. Just like you predicted they would be.

You just wouldn’t believe how successful, brilliant and attractive they all are. They take after you. They have all changed so very much since you passed. They were forced to battle their way out of childhood almost overnight when they lost their dad. It was sad, but awe-inspiring. It spoke volumes about the spark you left kindled inside them all.

And yet, in many ways, they are exactly as you left them. Just as you knew them to be and said they would be. You knew them each immediately and instinctively and constantly reassured my angst.

I sure do miss complaining about them with you. You were the only safe person to complain to, because you are the only other person in the world that loved them unconditionally, as I do.

There was no judgement. Anything they did was at least 1/2 your fault (maybe more?)

Our firmly established “Bad Cop/Good Cop” parenting formula is a colossal fail ever since Bad Cop turned in his badge and took early retirement. No one seems to take Good Cop seriously.

One more thing. And I can’t believe I’m even saying this, but…

We have 2 1/2 grandchildren now. Every time I’m with them, I find myself searching intently for you. I look for your blink, your lips, an inflection, an attitude, a tone, a brow furrow or a shoulder shrug. I know you’re in there somewhere.

I look forward to finding you as the years go by. My hope is to get you back in little particles and pieces every day.

Know that I’ll never never stop looking My Love.

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