I sit in a lawn chair staring at the sky.
Fireworks burst before my eyes, but my mind is flashing even brighter with memories of years gone by.
Our first 4th of July, he propped the ladder against the side of his rent house and hopped up on the roof reaching down for my hand. We lay there watching the sky explode in patriotic colors.
Fast forward five years to him holding our seven week old son while sitting on the rear compartment of our minivan in Plano, Texas to watch the fireworks. I can see his ball cap on his head and Kolby with pacifier in mouth. I remember what they wore.
Pops of color bring another flash of memory to us in lawn chairs in the bed of his truck lined with quilts as our one and two year old children stare in awe at the UCO spectacular show.
A splash of light floods the sky as years come tumbling through my mind. Festivities with friends in our neighborhood, fun with new friends as time progresses, time with his oldest friend as both men have landed in Edmond.
The sound of a boom and tears slide down my cheeks as memories of the final 4th of July crash into my mind. I am rearranging hospital furniture to get his bed closer to a window so he can see the beauty of America’s celebration. We had planned to sneak up on the hospital roof, but he was too weak so we improvised. He is so grateful for my efforts to help him experience some portion of normalcy in this slow march toward death's door.
I find myself happy and yet sad. Tears of gratitude flow unashamedly beside tears of sadness.
And I realize that one week out from 18 months into this journey;
this is the place where joy and sorrow co-mingle.
Here, in my memories.
It is both beautiful and hard.
It is all together lovely and crushing; uplifting and devastating.
To have known a love so fierce,
To have been cherished so completely,
To have experienced in our twenty years what friends say many don’t know in a lifetime;
It is a privilege and it is heartbreaking at the same time.
Tim~ Loving you forever, missing you always….Lori