I've been pretty vigilant since Gary died, seemingly always on the watch for things that might make me cry, things that might make me run, things that might make me look a right idiot in public.
I've become been pretty good at being normal on the outside if I do say so myself.
I was blindsided a couple of weeks ago though at a work event. My husband was the regional director in the health sector where I am also an employee. Anyway long story short his replacement was giving a speech before an accreditation survey and fumbled over a few sentences.
Before I knew it my mind drifted back to the times I had seen Gary give similar speeches and how confident and smoothly he had always delivered them, despite frequently confiding in me at home how nervous he'd been.
I was daydreaming at the back of the room picturing him, handsome in his suit and tie and could almost hear him compelling the audience to listen. I suddenly choked up and struggled to not breakdown in front of everyone. I couldn't wait to get away chiding myself for allowing daydreaming in public and only later pondered my actions.
The simple fact was that I had probably never told Gary how proud I was of him when he spoke publicly and how much I loved the sound of his voice, always reassuring and calm, always making me feel safe. I probably never told him how I listened for his car and even after 20 years how my heart would leap as he walked in the front door after work.
I know I never really told him enough how much I loved him or how smart I thought he was or how grateful I was that he had loved me. I picture him now how tired he would come home from dedicating his life to a public service that replaced him in a minute and I wish he had more time to live his own dreams.
Most of all I wish I had told him just how much I loved his blue eyes and all the other stupid little things that flood my mind that just used to make my day and make me smile. Now the memories flood my mind and make me cry, maybe one day they will make me smile again.