In three days, it will have been one month since Steve passed away. It seems like it was just a few minutes ago...odd, how time stands so still and flies by so fast at the same time.
I had to step away from everybody for a couple of nights this week, to try and come to grips with the loss. It's kind of hard to do that when you keep finding out things that make it seem as senseless as it was unreal. Like he wouldn't let anyone call the rescue squad for him, saying he was just tired. That he was taking Oxycontin and other drugs because he was in pain and wouldn't (couldn't) see a doctor about his health problems because he had no insurance.
Damn it all. If he had let us, we would have helped him.
And then there are the unexplained things that kept happening after he passed. The front door at his house opening by itself - it scrubbed on the carpet. Patience and I saw that. The garage door opening by itself. His phone number on a sticky note jumping off of the refrigerator at Dad's house. A message from beyond? A spirit caught between earth and the Universe? I don't know...my logical self tells me we're human and look for signs after a loved one has passed on, anything that would reassure us that death is not the absolute end. And my emotional self tells me, he's still here...
Everyone was talking about how Steve had "visited" them. With Dad, it was a dream that Steve came to him and said, I can breathe now. With Patience, it was the candles blowing sideways and the doors opening. With Mike, it was a warm hand on his shoulder as he was driving.
I can't for sure say that Steve has come to me, except for the song that popped into my head as I was going over and over all that had happened and questioning why. Out of nowhere the lyrics came...Let It Be. I remember nodding, as if to say, Okay, I understand. But I didn't. And then last Saturday I visited Patience, and she and I were talking. She was having a really good day, but still, I broke down and cried. And from the radio came the music...Paul McCartney singing Let It Be.
Is that what I wanted? To let it be, to just accept it and to stop torturing myself with all the why's and what ifs? Or was it a message, for me. Was it my visit.
The middle of last week, I went to Steve's grave for the first time since the day after the funeral. I had no idea why I was compelled to go there, but I had to. For a while, I just stood there and stared down at that long rectangle of bare earth. And then I started talking. I told him I didn't understand why he refused help, why he didn't come to any of us. Why he wouldn't let anyone call an ambulance - three people had tried. I told him that maybe he didn't have to die, that if he had let somebody - anybody - help, maybe he might still be with us. And I told him I was so MAD at him, but that was because I do love him..not because I didn't. That little monologue ended with my hope for him that wherever he might be that he was free from pain and that he didn't need anything of this world anymore. And I left.
Driving down the road...with the radio on...still somewhere off in the distance, not really paying attention to anything except how I was feeling...the music came over the radio. Paul McCartney singing Let It Be. Maybe I really had had a visit from Steve. Perhaps not. But if letting it be is what has to be done, then that's what I'll do.