What does one write about the loss of a dear, cherished, loved, mother, wife, companion, and friend? I don't know. I know that I could never do her justice in the word I could write about her. But one thing for sure is I got the greatest privilege of calling her mine for these 13 short years of marriage. Anne elevated everyone around her and even me.
The past week and a half has been so intense, full of anguish, remorse, pain, disappointment and sorrow. Crazy enough, it has also been sprinkled with hope, faith, love, grace, peace, joy, and spiritual insight.
I was so anxious about loosing Anne when she went into the hospital and I did not want her to know this because I wanted her to be at peace. This was an emotional battle. We realized that Anne's time was counting down due to a brain tumor that was new. The Neurosurgeon believed that the tumor, about the size of a golf ball, was hemorrhaging and he feared she would not do well with surgery or after surgery. So we were in a waiting game. Time was counting down.
They guessed at best that Anne had at most a few weeks. As the week progressed the pain became worse and Anne was paralyzed on her right side and blind in her right eye. Anne had times that she was not coherent and times that she was quite with it. When she was alert she wanted to see all her immediate family and a few others. She was amazing how she would be quite alert as she got to say goodbye to everyone she loved close and dear. Then she would have mental difficulty and rest. This is just like Anne do it right, with grace, and the way she wanted to. I know that she was blessed to be able to part with us in such a way.
There is nothing one can do can prepare fully for the moment of release. Anne's pain was increasing through the week until she could no longer be awake due to the pain meds and she lost sight of the remainder of her vision.
I was selfish and feeling anxious because she was saying goodbye with the last bit of energy she had and I was starting to feel I would not get time with her in her waking moments. The last day that she was able to be alert she had already said goodbye to our families and it was as if she new of my anxiety and woke up for most of the day to be with me. She made me get up in bed with her. So we could hold each other in this anxious time. We laid there and laughed about the first day we met. . . We cried. . . I think that I did most of the crying. We talked most of the time about anything and everything. Anne and I had a bad habit of not going to sleep at nights and enjoyed talking. We loved to talk. So this day, once again, talking came so natural and it was wonderful.
Anne's pain level in her head and her chest was greatly increasing and they wanted to keep her comfortable. So they came and talked to her and told her that she would not be awake anymore in order to keep her out of pain. She OK with this and wanted this and said with calmness, "I am ready I know it is time for me to go." This was about 7 pm and I had apx 7 hours of sleep in 72 hours. We knew that time was close. Anne asked that I would stay with her. I told her that she could not keep me away. She fell asleep about one hour later. Anne is so strong she made it through a rocky night and I managed to dose for a little over one hour. When the time was minutes away she became very peaceful and everything stopped.
I know this is quite detailed and I am sorry for this. It is just the way it is all spilling out. I must say that this night was filled with much faith and prayer. For one to claim no need for a creator at this time would be a blatant lie to themselves and their creator.
I felt such a need to pray, specifically for me, to be worthy to be in her presence at the time of her passing. What a dependence we have and need on our Savior, Jesus Christ. He will strengthen us in our hour of need and will not leave us comfortless. She is an Elect Lady and an Angel. What a holy place and time this was for us.
I know that my Savior lives and loves me and my family and I could feel his love for me in this poignant moment. I know that he has a plan for us and that we will be a family forever. I know that this family forever-ness is possible and directly contingent to our obedience to Him and succumbing our will to the Lord. I am grateful I got to assist Anne to the next life and I know that I will see, hold, and kiss her again.
My Uncle Kim once said, "Anne, you are as beautiful inside as you are without. " She is beautiful and I have thought of this saying many times after.
Anne planned her entire funeral and in the hospital she said to me, "I don't want a sloppy funeral, get writing your talk right now." Of course I refused and wanted to make the most of our last moments. Instead wrote my talk 2 nights before the funeral in the middle of the night due to lack of time and inability to sleep. Anne's funeral was wonderful and we were blessed, and filled with the spirit of the holy Ghost, and Anne's beautiful presence.
Every thought of Anne is full of beauty and grace. This is interesting Anne would always say my name is so plain and I would always tell her how much I loved it. As I have said before Anne fits her name, for it means grace, or gracious.
I love this wonderful Elect Lady, Anne. She will be sorely missed and there is a big hole in our hearts at this time for her. I know things will be tough and really hard but I also know with time, patience and faith my girls and I will heal but always have a piece of her etched in our hearts until we get to embrace her again.
Your loveing husband,
First Day of School in Knoxville!
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