|My journal from 1990-1993.|
He and I went to high school together but didn't start dating until after we graduated. We were together throughout college and in the fall of my junior year he was diagnosed with testicular cancer. While doctors said his chances of survival were 80%, after 10 months of aggressive chemotherapy, radiation and surgery, he became a part of the 20% that doesn't make it.
I've been in touch with Paul's mother and asked for her blessing to put this down on paper, which she agreed to, though talking about Paul and looking at things that remind her of him is still incredibly painful 28 years after his death. Her grief and mine were and continue to be so different — I had lost my future husband, she lost her child.
I am in the process of going back through my journals and diaries back from when Paul and I were together. The journals document our relationship, its ups and downs, his cancer diagnosis and treatment and eventual death.
One journal covers the majority of the time, the next is a little snippet and then mostly empty, as I had graduated college and life became, well, life.
This was the opening entry of the first journal. I find it ironic because little did I know that by the end of the same journal I would have an actual body to deal with, one that belonged to someone I loved very much.
Here's my first journal entry:
A couple nights ago I had a strange dream. The setting was an old farm or some type of rural building. I was there with an older man, possibly the owner. He was somehow shot and killed and I was shocked by his death. However, this wasn’t the main part of the dream, as that happened quickly at the beginning.
The burial was the appalling part of the dream. His body, no casket or coffin, was lowered by two ropes into a grave which was filled with water. He was bloated and white, but once under the water he took on a greenish cast. They took the ropes out from under him, causing his body to roll in the water. A dirty glass was placed over him and planks were nailed over the glass, spaced apart so you could still see his body. He floated up to the glass, pressed against it in a desperate way as if trying to escape. Then I woke up.
Good beginning to a diary, isn’t it?And so this process begins. I may or may not update this blog as this continues, we'll see how this goes.