Wednesday, September 1, 2010


The physical pain of grief left my body a few months ago.

It is back. My heart often aches, truly aches, and my stomach feels unsettled, almost like butterflies.

I'm often taking involuntary sharp breaths as I think of Steve or see a photo or remember one of the many details that made Steve so Steve.


It was a year ago today that Steve learned that he would have to quit his job -- he was almost out of the intermittent leave that had allowed him to work a reduced schedule from home and still receive full-time pay and benefits. The news was necessary but devastating.

"But I don't want to quit," he told me over and over from his hospice bed. I used one hand to hold his hands and the other to wipe tears from his face.

He didn't want to quit so many things -- his career, his fight against the Damm Spot and all the subsequent challenges, his will to live and enjoy life with his family.

I believe that that was the day he started to let go. When his work was taken -- and it had to be taken -- he realized that his time in his body was nearing the end. The last bit of control that he had, his ability to work independently, was gone.

A resignation date was set for the following week. When he died the morning of Sept. 7, he was still technically employed.


I'm thankful for continued care, especially during these trying weeks, from so many people who love us and who loved Steve.

I'm also comforted by the peace in knowing that Steve and I together -- with the incredible support of hundreds of family members, friends, caregivers and strength-giving God -- did everything possible to extend his life. I have all kinds of doubts in my everyday life, but I have no doubt we did the best we could do.


I also find continued comfort and plenty of laughter from Cooper and Katie.


Katie composed a song while we were shopping. Sample of the lyrics: "In the world of love anything can happen. In the world of love, everything is pretty."

More than once last week, the first week of school, Cooper said: "Today it feels good to be alive."

Katie, while walking around the house: "There's a lot of jolly and fun in this house."

Cooper, upon learning that Steve and I were in Paris two years before he was born: "Well, I was probably in the final draft of creation then."

When we heard the song "Bust a Move" this weekend, I said, "Daddy loved the song." Katie replied, "Well, then I like it already."


I do hope many of you North Texans will be able to join us Tuesday night for the dedication of Steve's space. Full details are here.

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