Saturday, My Sadder Day

Another sad Saturday — 83 of them since my life mate died. Even when I don’t remember that it’s Saturday, or that Saturday is the day of the week he died, my body remembers, and my usual muted feeling of sadness becomes more pervasive. It’s not that I want to be sad; the sorrow just comes, especially when the weather is as perfect as today’s — warm, still, clear sky, bright sun, gently cooling breeze. I’d worry more about my continuing sadness except that I tend to be of a melancholic bent. And the sadness does reminds me to pay attention. Since he can no longer make note of a lovely day, it’s as if I need to appreciate it twice — once for me and once for him.

If Saturday is a sadder day than normal, that must be a sign that I am doing okay most of the time (otherwise I wouldn’t feel sadder; I’d just feel sad). The world still feels flawed, I still feel the phantom itch from where he was amputated from my life, and I still yearn to talk with him. Part of me (perhaps that fabled inner child?) cannot understand why I can’t call him to find out how he is doing, to see if he needs anything, to ask if I can come home. This yearning flares up every Saturday, as if he’s closer on this day, and it seems as if I should be able to reach out and touch him. But he’s gone, out of reach of even my sadness.

Oddly, in many respects, my life is much better now, at least temporarily, than it was at the end of “our” life. I don’t have to worry about him any more (though the habit of a lifetime is hard to break, so I wonder if he is feeling as lost and as alone as I sometimes feel). I have a lovely place to stay with proximity to wild spaces. I have a respite from bills and other such annoyances. I have time to indulge myself with small excursions and escapes.

But my heart doesn’t care for such things. It wants what it cannot have, especially on Saturday, my sadderday.

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12 Responses to “Saturday, My Sadder Day”

  1. leesis Says:

    please dont worry about your continuing sadness Pat. Melancholic tendencies aside losing a life partner means many moments of sadness over a long period of time. Gradually these moments become less, as yours have but really if a person is precious to us how can we not feel sad that they are no longer with us?

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I am getting used to being alone, to his being gone, but there are times the reality of his death wells up, and it’s almost like at the beginning. Sometimes I feel so childish. I DO NOT WANT HIM TO BE DEAD!!! But it makes no difference. He is. And damn it. I miss him. Probably always will.

      • Lisa Says:

        Yeah, sometimes when really bad things have happened in my life, I have this feeling that if I close my eyes and wish really hard, I can make it un-happen. I’m sorry you can’t. Sorry that you’re grieving. It sounds like an amazing, wonderful relationship, and I doubt that many of us have experienced that level of love and connection and fulfillment.

        • Pat Bertram Says:

          Lisa, Oddly enough, it didn’t seem like a wonderful or fulfilling relationship. He was so often sick that it really skewed things. The connection was very strong, though — kept us together through a lot of tough times. Part of my grief is for all the things he could never do or will never be able to do now, for all his dreams that went unfulfilled. It’s scant comfort that he no longer cares, because I do.

  2. Bob Meeker Says:

    Hello again Pat. I think you have just explained why I always feel so much sadder on weekends than during the week. I’m at almost 11 months now (8 months behind you) and I too lost my spouse on a Saturday, but it was in December and it never occurred to me that the grief would hit harder every week as we approached Saturday. We all handle this differently they say and yet some things are common among all of us aren’t they? It’s supposed to get easier but that’s not happening yet with me. This weekend has been very hard but onward we struggle through the fog!

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Hi, Bob. I’m glad you stopped by. I’ve been wondering how you were doing. It doesn’t really get easier, how can it? Our loved ones are still gone. You get used to the grief, though, and it becomes easier to distract yourself.

      And yes, the day of the week makes a big difference. Most of us feel sadder on the day they died. I don’t know why that is, I only know it’s the way it is.

      Take care of yourself, and be sure to stop by if you need someone to talk to.

  3. Kathy Holmes Says:

    The only way I can relate, Pat, is that the little girl inside of me will never understand why I couldn’t know my father growing up. He was right there in the next town over. So why did my mother keep me from him? Because she wanted to create a new family, with a new daddy, and with new kids. Most days I’m a strong, grown-up woman who has grieved and learned to accept that loss and even celebrate who I am because I’ve lived the life I have. But every once in awhile, that little girl cries out for her real daddy.

    I’m so sorry for your loss, Pat! I’m here if you need to talk.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      There is a lot of commonality among losses that affect us deeply, whether it’s being deprived of your father or being deprived of one’s mate. It’s all hard. I’m so glad you can celebrate who you are. Maybe someday I will be able to accept who I am (once I figure it out, that is).

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  6. Karen Says:

    Re: My Sadder Saturday….My beloved husband actually died @1:57 AM on Monday, July 18, 2016. However, our world as we knew it may just as well have ended right then & there, because it was the beginning of the end. The abdominal pains started about 4:15 pm, he said. He tried to ignore them, thinking they were the usual esophagus pain he got every so often. But these were different, so he called me in from my yard work about 5 PM Saturday, a beautiful warm sunny Saturday in mid July. It was supposed to be just another Saturday – leading up to Sunday, and our church, etc., you know – our happy life continuing. Supper was already warming on the stove, and I also thought they were his usual pains that would subside, and life would soon get back to normal. After all – yesterday he told me happily “Gee Hon, I feel exceptionally well today!”

    But – no – not this time. This time he started sweating & feeling dizzy, he said I’d better get him to the hospital as he was now yelling from the pain. I could get him there faster than the ambulance. No time to think – just turn off the supper, run to get the dogs into the bedroom & close the door – and help get him up the stairs from his rec room/man cave. Upstairs & outside, down the sidewalk for what would be his last walk there ever, away from the house that contained our life, and our love – the house he & my father built so many years ago – the house he was so grateful to God for. Into the car, and what would be his last car ride. He always insisted on driving but not this time. We didn’t know it – but I was driving him away from the life we so loved & cherished, away from our 4 dogs that we both loved so, away from his man cave I so lovingly created for him, and away from his big screen TV he enjoyed every day.. Away from his zero turn lawn mower he happily mowed the lawn with, as he surveyed his domain, and thank God for. Down the driveway & onto the road towards the hospital, I sped away from us, from our marriage, and life as we so enjoyed it, trying to get him the help he desperately needed, as he continued to cry out in pain, holding his stomach area, doubling over.. We arrived at the hospital, and I was still in denial that it was as serious as it was. After all – due to his COPD & other issues, we had made many other trips there & back home. I’d probably be able to pick him up tomorrow – I thought – they’d fix what was wrong. Strangely – I was not that worried THIS time, as I was other times. They met us at the car with a wheel chair for him, and I went to park the car in the familiar ED parking lot. Paused in the car for a quick application of makeup & lipstick, & touched up my hair. I was a mess from the yard work…After all – he was going to be ok, I thought. He always was before.

    By the time I got to where he was – they were giving him the EKG & determined – no heart attack. But – he was out of my control now, and in their hands, and all I could do was watch as they wheeled him into the cubicle room – room #37.. with me trying to keep up. He was in so much pain by now that he was yelling for pain medication. They did the usual routine stuff, calmly bustling around, getting him into the hospital gown, hooking him up to all the monitors & oxygen & getting ready to take numerous blood samples. – saying he would soon be given relief. My adorable guy, usually joking around with the hospital staff, now could only wince in agony at the unrelenting pain. I was beside myself, begging the staff to give him the pain meds. I stayed with him, trying to calm him, and in my own mind, – trying to figure out what was wrong, but clinging to the hope – the pain would stop. He was scared – I could tell. He asked me to call his sister so they would pray. I held the phone up to his ear, and he prayed along with them, nodding his head. The last time his sister & he would hear each other’s voices. He started to break a fever, and was shivering, asked for a blanket. I summoned the nurse who soon came back with a warmed blanket. He looked at me with such an intense look of gratitude & love in his eyes. He apologized “for being such a pain all these years” and then told me how grateful he was that I always stood by him, and was sorry for all the trauma I also had to endure thru his many past illnesses. He told me how much he loved me, that he was grateful I was his wife, and again apologized. I told him to stop saying that – told him I loved him with all my heart, and was there because God had me to be his helpmate, and I was so glad to do it. I said I would always be there for him. Soon, the numerous pain meds caused him to fall asleep. I guess, that was our good-bye to each other and to our love & marriage on this earth.

    I stayed there till 12:30 Sunday morning – after he finally fell asleep, and the ER doctor said it was ok for me to go home & get some rest. He thought my beloved husband “had a good prognosis”….. So I left for home. Little did anyone know..

    4:30 AM Sunday morning – got the phone call – that is never good news when a loved one is in the hospital. I woke up screaming NO NO NO NO in agony – I knew something was drastically wrong…..He was in ICU, and unconscious, and on a ventilator & intubated.

    After the all day vigil in ICU – he never regained consciousness. The excruciating pain he was having when I brought him in was from diverticulitis, I would later learn. A very small breach in his colon permitted gram negative bacteria to enter his blood stream, and it was all over. The devilish stuff multiplied in his bloodstream – like a rampaging wildfire, and by the time they realized what was happening – it was too late, despite the heroic efforts of the ICU team – he was in septic shock. His body soon turned into multi organ failure, and the only hope was dialysis, because his kidneys weren’t putting out any urine. Exhausted – I and the group of family & friends gathered there – decided to go home & rest while they did the procedure, the only option & chance to save his life. The kidney doctor called me at home, and said she was hopeful as they started the procedure, and I should receive a call in a few hours. I once again had a tiny ray of hope. That call never came – I fell asleep from exhaustion, waiting for it. But – After 1 AM – another call came through, the doctor saying they couldn’t do the procedure because his heart went into Afib and I’d better get there ASAP – he didn’t think my husband would make it thru the night. I had to call his sister & her husband. While on the phone with them, another call beeped, and I hung up with them. The doctor said his heart stopped – did I want them to do CPR? YES – TRY ANYTHING… But I knew… Called his sister again, and while talking to my brother in law, who answered – the final call from the doctor interrupted again.. This time. “I am so sorry maam, but we couldn’t get your husband’s heart started. He’s gone”…. so thus ended my happy life, and began my unwanted widowhood.

    Every Saturday – the events that started the beginning of our end, start to play out again in my mind – over and over and over. Each weekend, I am reminded my beloved husband and our life together is gone. Stopped – for all intents & purposes – at 5PM – Saturday, July 16th 2016.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I am so very very sorry about your husband. Such a loss is unbearably difficult even a year or two or three later – how can it not be when not only your husband’s life is gone but all the hopes and dreams you shared. Thank you for taking the time to tell the story about your sadder Saturday. Wishing you a peaceful Sunday.


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