The one about why I created the blog: First Post

Hey there! You might be visiting this site for a number of reasons. Hopefully you find me entertaining/interesting enough to stick around. So I’m gonna dive right in. My name is Amber and I recently joined the widow’s club. A club nobody wants to join. Well, I guess I can’t speak for everyone. There are people out there would want their husband to drop dead or made it happen. Hopefully they are either divorced, or in jail. Wow, I’m already getting sidetracked. Anyway..

His name was Kyle. We were together for 6 years.

Or 321 weeks, 2253 days, 54,048 hours, or 3,242,925 minutes.

We survived being insanely broke in NYC, adopting 2 dogs together, the passing of one of the dogs, buying a house, and then cancer. B-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Well, he didn’t survive the cancer. Thats where our story ended. It was 12:45am on October 28th, 2016. He suffered a stroke after battling a respiratory infection. One of the deadliest things a chemo patient can acquire. The song “Mr. Cellophane” had just finished playing from his favorite playlists labeled “Musicals”. I’ll explain why thats important later. October 19th was the last day I saw his eyes open, heard his voice, and was assured that he would be his strongest. It was also my birthday. He had setbacks before. C-diff, cryptococcus, and Klebsiella pneumoniae to name the major ones. When I spoke to him on the 19th, I had this feeling that it would be the last. It felt different this time, and I was truly scared. I told him I loved him and that he was the love of my life. He said the same and was intubated shortly after.

We were married for 28 days. On the 29th day, I was picking out which coffin he would be buried in. I was deciding which readings would be used for a funeral. A funeral that would be held at the same church where we vowed to love each other all the days of our life. It was unreal.

I told Kyle that I hope that I go first because I can’t imagine living life without him. I would curl up in a ball in a dark corner and never want to move. Life would not be worth living without him.

And yet, here I am. Although I had days where I didn’t get out of bed till way past 2pm, and I’m pretty sure I soberly blacked out the first week after he passed- I was still here. As I closed out 2016 with my newly acquired sisters and brother (in-laws, but much more than that), I made a promise to find my new purpose in 2017. Losing your significant other to cancer changes you. And when they die, a piece of you also dies. I didn’t realize that at first. So now I’m going to make lemons into lemonade and it starts with this blog.

I miss you

10 months I’ve been without your laugh, your singing, your goofiness, and your smile. I miss the way you used to hug me when I was sad and kiss my forehead randomly. I miss how even when I was yelling at you, you could make me laugh. Nobody has ever been able to do that and probably never will again. I miss the way you would get excited about the small things in life like when we bought a house and would tell people it had a HOT TUB like it was the only reason we bought the place. I miss having lazy nights in watching The Office, How I Met your Mother, and Parks and Rec while we ate comfort food like Mac and cheese with cut up hot dogs and laughed till we cried. I miss our inside jokes from quoting movies like The Three Amigos (“What are we doing in MEXICO!?”) or Princess Bride (“Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die!”). My favorite was how you could ever so perfectly impersonate Goofy and sing “On the Open Road.” Oh how I miss our road trips. We would listen to Disney songs and our favorite broadway songs non stop. I used to be intimidated by how well you could sing. It took me at least a year to get to the point where I could also belt out singing in the car with you. I’m not even sure why. You would never put me down about it or try to coach me. Continue reading

The one about the new guy and dating again

One of the things I’ve struggled with through the loss of Kyle is being single again. I haven’t been single much since I was 15 years old. I had a 2 year relationship, followed by a 4 year relationship, and was with Kyle for 6 years. The time in between these relationships ranged from a couple of months to 5 months at the most, just enough time to be ready to date again. So after 13 years of almost constantly being in a relationship, it was very difficult for me to adjust to grieving over the loss of Kyle and dealing with being single again AND living alone for the first time ever in my life. It was a lot to handle for me. It was being more that just single- it was the definition of being a young widow. Continue reading

The one about Peter and the Starcatcher

Kyle and I always shared a love and passion for theatre. I loved seeing shows with him. We would typically spend the entire car ride home discussing directing choices, set design, our favorite characters, and how we interpreted certain interactions in a scene. We even got to see one last show in the summer of 2016 when Kyle was sick. Nothing could keep Kyle away from seeing a show if he wanted to. Continue reading

The one about what I’ve learned so far – 4 mo. mark

I’m 4 months and 1 week out as of today. One of the biggest things I’ve realized is that the bad days (sometimes bad weeks) hit a lot harder than I expected them to. Sometimes, I day dream about going back in time and reliving October of 2016. I wish I could take what I know now and save him. I think this means I still have not fully accepted that he’s gone. I still hold on to some ray of hope that this is fixable. Continue reading

The one about Valentine’s Day

I’m posting this a little late because the whole blog thing has gotten away from me. I don’t really have a good excuse other than I’ve gone back to work and thats sort of disrupted my flow of writing.

So this past Valentine’s Day was the first time I’ve been single since some time in high school. Well over 12 years ago. In past relationships, I felt the need to go get a card, some candy, and go out to dinner with my boyfriend because thats what you do, right? The first Valentine’s Day Kyle and I spent together we had just moved to Bushwick, Brooklyn in our nice apartment in the middle of a not so great neighborhood. We were extremely broke and jobless at this point. Continue reading

The one about going to a seminar on dealing with loss

Getting through the first two weeks was definitely the worst. I think I had to reach rock bottom before I could go back up. My friend Sara mentioned that on Monday, November 21st they were having a seminar at a nearby college about dealing with loss during the holidays. She wanted to go and I was already going to be at her house because their annual Funsgiving was on the Saturday before. I felt motivated to try everything and anything that would help me with the healing process. However, when we walked in, I immediately felt a sense of regret. Continue reading

The one about the shock wearing off – Week 2

The funeral was on November 4th, a Friday. Luckily this meant a lot of people could stay in town for the weekend. I continued to keep myself busy by hanging out with those who were still in the area and I enjoyed their company. We basically just hung out in the hotel, continued to drink, tell stories, and belly laugh till our sides hurt. I remember dreading that Sunday was coming and that meant these people had to leave and go back to their lives outside of all of this. They would go back to their jobs, their homes, their pets, and their children. I would stay here in Oneonta. I would go back to living in my house and try to continue my with my own life. The problem was I didn’t know what my life was anymore. I was no longer the caregiver. I no longer had Kyle to come home to. I would no longer sit on the couch with him and watch Parks and Rec on Netflix till the wee hours of the morning. I went back to my house on Sunday with Angela and realizing that this was all about to happen. I sat on the couch with Angela and had a huge breakdown. My heart felt so heavy. Continue reading