Undoubtedly and undeniably the hardest part of losing my spouse is the impact it has had on my brilliant little girl….who is not so little these days.
Let me tell you about A. A is a gifted child, she was reading chapter books at the rate of one a day in Kindergarden. She would create these math problems that yielded numeric palindromes (i.e. 158903858309851), in her spare time, just for fun. She had just turned 8 two weeks prior to his death. At that time, she was a black belt in TaeKwonDo and actively competing in gymnastics. Your basic overachiever child who never met a challenge she didn’t want take head on.
A’s bond with her father was something of envy. They read books together, watched Phineas and Ferb religiously, cooked together, and had a blast. In fact, here is a funny side story from the hospital:
My husband, B, was on a ventilator and was about to receive a heart pump, with all the tubes and wires, it was easiest for the nurses to check his pulse manually from his ankles. The nurse entered the room, pulled up the covers that were over his feet, and gave the strangest look. I am pretty sure she didn’t want me to see the look, and was hoping I was just working away on my laptop and it would go unnoticed, however, I spied her confusion… I actually giggled outloud as the nurse left the room. My friend, who was sitting with me at the time, had no idea what was making me smile and laugh during such a serious and solemn time. I explained…you see, B’s toenails had been painted a sparkly pink. A had given him a pedicure in the days prior to his unexpected trip to the hospital. I am sure the nurse was confused, I didn’t offer any explanation, and that just made it all the funnier.
So, my husband and my daughter were close. It broke my heart to be the one to break her heart when I told her of his passing. That is what really hurt the most. And to be honest. That bright, shiny, innocent look of a child began to sparkle just a little bit less after that day. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like I can see it in her eyes sometimes, even now.
Rather than ending this passage on a sad note, it may please you to know that A is still brilliant, although she is a teenager now. She is well-rounded and very well-adjusted. Her journey has not been an easy one, she has had her share of obstacles with school and her social life, but handles things with more grace than I ever could. Hint: She gets that from her dad.