Before I Knew...
by Michael Spitzkoff
You walked into the room and sat in front of the fire all alone. You grabbed our picture off the end table next to the couch; gazing at the picture of us taken in Puerto Rico during our cruise two years ago. You sported a grin as a stray tear ran down the side of your cheek. The fire began to dye out as you fell asleep on the floor near the couch. I wish you would talk to me, but you seemed to ignore my every word. Are you angry with me, and I don’t know it? Maybe…you’re just extremely tired.
The next morning you made the kids their lunches and sent them off to school just like clock work. After you got ready for work and fed the dogs, off to the office you went. At work you were a ray of light as usual; charming the pants off of everyone in your office. You ended up in a meeting half the day, the rest of the day you prepared a presentation for a project you had been raving about for months. You're brilliant; I’m very proud of you. I just wish you would say something to me.
That rest of the week it was more or less the same for you with work, chores around the house and of course, helping the kids with their homework. At the end of each night, you tucked the children in and told them a story until they fell asleep. You are such a good mother, I just wish you would say something: stop ignoring me!
The weekend was here and your folks came over for dinner. It was so nice seeing you with the kids and how good you are with them in free time. Saturday night we sat down as a family with your parents for a very elegant dinner. There was a deliciously looking pot roast that your father whipped up along with your mothers famous potato casserole followed by the always tasty apple pie for dessert, your favorite. Dinner seemed to go smooth with no arguments, it was a nice evening, but I just wish you would say something.
That night you cried yourself to sleep starring a picture on my side of the bed that was taken of us before we got married. You looked so sad; I tried to cheer you up, you wouldn't respond. Please talk to me.
Sunday morning came and it was always our day to sleep in and just be lazy with breakfast in bed. But, sure enough the kids came storming into the room and jumped on the bed. You made breakfast for everyone followed by a tussle by the children as to which Sunday morning show was going to be watched on TV. After the commotion, you took the children and the dogs to the park near the house. You let the dogs roam free, then sat and watched our beautiful daughter and son play on the playground. I tried talking to you, but still get no response from you.
Immediately after the park you drove to the cemetery. You and the children walked down a line of head stones and stopped at one located next to small pond. Looking down, I noticed the head stone which read, “In the loving memory of Alex Johnson. The most amazing husband and best father.” The dates read "1968-2011." Just then I realized: This was my head stone you and the children were standing over. I was never...going to talk to you again.