Life forever changed when the love of my life left my life from one night in a car. These are based on true life events.
I looked over at James; we had just left a friend’s birthday party. James had been drinking yet again, and I was pretty pissed off. I sighed and quietly tried to start speaking, but I stopped myself many times, trying to find the right words.
“I wish you’d stop drinking so much when we went out, it scares me when you’re always drunk, why are you always drunk, is it me?” My lip quivered, I didn’t want to start crying.
“I drink because I can Eddie, that’s what being an adult is about sometimes. Having a good time with your family and friends over a few beers, it’s not like I’m drunk, I had three beers.” The anger in James’ voice could be felt like a knife cutting through meat, the air was very tense.
“That’s not what I’m saying; I’m just asking you to maybe go out once or twice without coming home tipsy. It’s been this way for awhile; I was just hoping you could stop.” I wasn’t trying to sound accusing.
James sighed heavily, “I don’t understand why it’s such a problem, I’m not an alcoholic or something, and I have never hit you.
“I know, I just thought it would be nice to maybe go out without drinking once in a while.” My voice was still high pitched, as I tried to fight the tears rolling down my face.
We rolled up to the stop line at the intersection by our house, we were just about home. I just wanted to go to bed before this fight got too intense. I should have just kept my mouth shut, than none of this would have been a problem.
“Maybe we should take a break Eddie, we don’t seem to be getting any better, and we just seem to be getting worse and worse with every day”
The way his voice sounded, I started to cry, I couldn’t lose him, and he was my absolute everything. We had been dating since we were 12; we had just celebrated our fifth year together by getting engaged. I couldn’t have been happier, why did he just want to go on a break, couldn’t we work this out?
As the light turned green, James started driving forward. It felt like a lighting bolt hit us, as a semi-truck rolled through the intersection and smashed into the car, sending it flying into the ditch like a rubber band, rolling three times before finally stopping upside down. I opened my eyes, expecting to be dead, but I was just in some extreme amounts of pain. It felt like my legs were tied down with something.
I tried to move, but a pain I have never felt before ran through my body, making me let out a horrible scream. I could feel something wet on my face and neck, I touched it and tried to look at what it was, it looked like blood; what the hell happened? I looked over at James, but he wasn’t moving; I couldn’t even tell if he was breathing. I tried to shake him, the pain in my leg sending huge pulses throughout my body, but I had to wake him up, I had to make him open his eyes.
I could here some yelling outside the car, and a siren was going around and around. I tried not to follow it as it made me dizzy, I felt light headed and I started to close my eyes. As suddenly as my eyes started to close, something started pulling on my jacket, and I could feel my legs starting to rush with pain again, and they were as wet as my face. I could hear someone asking me something, but I couldn’t understand them, I couldn’t make out the words. The next thing I remember is going into the back of a truck, the doors shutting and us driving away; I blacked out.
I woke up in a strange room, it wasn’t my house. I tried to get up, but it hurt to even move any part of my body. I looked around the room from what I could see, but the only think I could see was white walks, white ceiling and a white bed; was I dead?
I head some talking, as I tried adjusting my eyes to the light that was blinding me from above. I tried to look over, but I couldn’t see a thing. Where was I? I tried to get up again, but the pain was just too much to handle. I heard footsteps and then someone was holding my hand, was it James?
I looked over and saw a man with gray hair, a white jacket and some scrubs that was definitely not James; unless he aged by sixty years. I tried to speak, but words couldn’t come out, I couldn’t even remember what words were.
“Mister Bettin, My name is Dr. Caandle. I am a doctor at the University Hospital. How are you doing? Are you okay?”
The voice didn’t sound familiar, it seemed so foreign. “My n-name is Eddie. Wh-where is J-james?” words stuttered out as I tried to pronounce full words.
There was a silence for a second, I finally got used to the light above me and looked at the doctor sitting in a chair next to my bed. His face wasn’t as kind as I expected, it had wrinkles all over it and the frown on his face didn’t make him any more kind than I wanted it to be.
“I’m sorry Mister Bettin, but your fiancé did not make it through. He wasn’t as lucky as you.”
I didn’t know how to feel, was this some sick joke? Was this something James was doing to make me feel bad for fighting with him? Was this just some big, over exaggerated joke?
I looked around the room, and saw a girl standing at the door with another man. My eyes hurt, but I could tell it was my sister and my dad. They were at the doorway, Courtney’s eyes were completely red, and she seemed to be crying more. I wanted to know what was wrong, but the words wouldn’t come out. I tried to turn my back, but it hurt so much I fell back into the pillow.
“We’re going to keep you here for a few days to see how you’re doing, and then we’ll decide if you can go home.” The Doctor left the room, I didn’t care anymore; I feel back to sleep.
The next time I woke up, my sister was beside me, holding my hand. She seemed to be less sad, her face wasn’t red and she wasn’t crying. She looked up when I shifted my weight over, and smiled.
“I’m taking you home today Eddie. Aren’t you excited?” She seemed to be trying to be happy, but I could see the underlying sadness.
“Is he really gone? Did I just have a really bad dream?”
Her eyes told me what I needed to know, tears strolled down my face as I realized he really was gone, that I really was alone and that I had no control over what had happened. The last thing I remember talking to him about was the fight we had, how he had wanted to go on a break; well I guess we are on a break, a permanent one.
When my sister and father drove me home, the feeling in the car was tense and sad. Nobody talked, when they dropped me off at the house, all I could think about was how I didn’t want to go inside. I unlocked the door and opened it, letting the door hit the stopper and stay open. I didn’t want to walk in, but I had to.
I closed the door behind me; the house looked like we had left it, just over a wee ago. There was nothing touched, everything in its place. James had been a clean freak, which sometimes bothered me, but it was nice to see a clean house. I walked up the stairs and went to my room, when I pulled back the sheets and lied down, I closed my eyes and dreamed he was beside me, holding me while I fell asleep.
Two years later
This house is so empty, I still haven’t removed any of James’ stuff, it’s all still scattered about the house, none of it has moved. I haven’t even washed his dirty laundry; I don’t want to lose the smell of his cologne on his shirts. I miss his smell, his touch, his voice; my life still hasn’t been the same.
The other day I was cleaning the baseboards in the hallway, when I passed the work-out room he had made himself, the equipment still sitting there, dusty as hell and haven’t been used or washed in well over two years. I walked inside, looked around and sat on the bench press; looking at the bells sitting neatly on the side, waiting to be used.
James was working out, lifting weights. He looked so sexy when he had his shirt off; sweat was dripping down his chest. He was making those extremely unattractive sounds most men make when they’re working out; but when he did it, it was absolutely amazing; they sounded so sexy, so manly.
I had just got home from a run, I was just as sweaty as he was; sweat pouring from my forehead and my chest, making me feel extremely gross, I needed a shower. I walked into the room, sitting down beside him, watching him left those weights with all his might. I asked him if he would like to join me for a shower, he looked up from his weights and smiled, I remembered exactly what he said, ‘We need to get dirty before we have a shower.’
Pulling me into his embrace, he kissed me on the lips, pushing his hands around my waist, slightly lifting up my shirt. He pulled it off with one tug and kissed my neck. He took off his shirt and threw off his shorts, exposing the fact he didn’t like to wear underwear. We made love that day, two times; both lasting well over three hours. When we were done, we had a shower and crawled into bed. We fell asleep listening to each other’s heart beats, I was sure than that he was the one for me.
Back to reality
Today is September 21, 2007; one month after he left me alone, one month after my life felt over. I was getting dressed and ready to head over to the graveyard, I had bought white and red roses, his favourite; to put on his grave. He loved flowers, they made him feel beautiful and he thought they were the best gift you could give someone, besides chocolate.
I got into my car and drove to the graveyard, pulling into a parking space, nobody was here today. The air was slightly cool, but still felt as if it was a hot summer day. I got out of the car and started walking to the grave, looking at all the gravestones along the way. Did these people still more the loss of their parents, children, siblings, grandparents and spouses? Did they still cry for them, after two years? Did they miss them? Or did they move on, trying never to look back at the part of their heart that was gone?
I found the tombstone and sat next to it, feeling over the letters cut in stone, reading aloud to myself. ‘James Lethbridge, March 12, 1990 to August 21, 2007. Son, Brother, Fiancée, Forever missed, forever loved.’ The tears swelled up into my eyes and started to poor out onto my cheek, evaporating into the sun as they hit the soft dirt below. I started to talk to the air, pretending that James was right there, that I was trying to make everything alright.
“Baby … I was never mad at you. I never hated you. I didn’t want you to leave, I was just angry. I’m sorry that my foolishness ended your life, I’m sorry I didn’t save you. I miss you, and I just wish that I could have stopped that semi, I wish I could have warned you.”
Sighing heavily, I got up and looked again at the tombstone. As if God had heard me crying, as if he had heard me talking, something wrapped their arms around me. Something pulled me in closely and started to talk to me, I knew it was him the second the voice started talking, he told me he loved me, that he was never mad. He told me he will always love me, and when my time here on earth ends and I go up to heaven, hell be waiting for me. He’ll be waiting to kiss me, and hug me and he knows we’ll be together again. As soon as it started, it ended. The aspiration was gone and I was left alone, yet again.
I couldn’t be sad; I smiled to myself and walked back to the car. I got inside and started it up, looking across the graveyard at his tombstone, I sighed lightly to myself and let out the words, “I miss you.”