Have you ever received a message or letter that you wished the sender had had the good sense not to send? I’ve received a few of them and I still can’t understand why someone would deliberately be cruel to another in order to make a point. The hate letter only causes more damage. It would have been better for the writer to burn the letter or delete the email before sending it.
I wrote a few days ago about the one person I hoped would not read my blog. How many of us carry negative feelings for a person but don’t say anything because it won’t matter to that person and it won’t resolve anything. My feelings are my responsibility. The other person is likely to have his or her own view on the grievance anyway. So I keep my feelings to myself. I wonder how my life might have been different if I weren’t conflict-avoidant?
The final months with Stephen during his illness were difficult for everyone involved. He was in excruciating pain but he continued to bravely battle his cancer. We all played a part in trying to keep him comfortable in his final days. But words were spoken in and out of his presence that I wished had not been said. He knew very well that the various actors had different interests, some of them not so altruistic. He didn’t need negativity and I wish he had been spared the comments and attitudes.
In the months after Stephen’s death, I felt numb, hurt and angry. For many reasons that will not be written here. I know those involved don’t care how I felt. I can accept that. It doesn’t take away the pain of losing Stephen and our life together.
I am writing a journal from my memory of my last months with Stephen. The journal details what happened each day, what Stephen experienced during his illness, what the doctors, nurses and each family member or visitor said in the course of his illness, including comments from the medical treatment notes. The journal includes those negative words and actions that can never be forgotten. Also included are my feelings and perceptions concerning those days even though the expression of negative feelings doesn’t come easy to me. The journal is over 100 pages long and I add details to it from time to time.
Writing the journal has been therapeutic for me. The journal is not meant to be read by anyone else and I am unwilling to share it when asked about it. I have noted the existence of the journal in my final instructions for my friend and executor and have requested that the journal be destroyed as soon as possible after my death. This is a document that would be better left unsent.