March 24 Thursday
I can't imagine where or what I would be doing today without all of you who have been by our sides the past 7 years 4 months while Vince battled his cancer. Praying, supporting us, visiting and, above all, loving us.
As this chapter comes to a sad end and as I write my last entry, I am left with an overwhelming feeling of gratitude .
As I think over these years (which seem like a lifetime) and the many times this disease took over Vince's life, I can't help feeling thankful. Thankful that someone was constantly praying, thankful that people would stop over out of the blue just to check-in, thankful for a phone call, thankful for an invite to go away with them, all just to cheer Vince up or lend an ear to listen.
When I woke this morning and came downstairs (all others in the house were still asleep) I was sitting here in my kitchen and feeling very somber. It was my first morning without Vince -- how very sad I felt. I prayed that the Lord and all other family members, his and mine, that have gone before would embrace him in love. That time alone was a blessing, for the rest of the day was a whirlwind of preparing for the viewing with Father Dave.
Tia and I hung a wind chime outside on Saturday the 19th, and made a comment on how since it was made of heavy metal it must need a lot of windy weather to make it chime because it wasn't making any noise, which struck both Tia and I as odd. Once we were ready to leave to go make his final arrangements, I had an overwhelming feeling of contentment; I think it was because the wind chime caught my attention making it's chiming noise as I came downstairs. It gave me comfort, and I knew Vince was already with our Lord.
March 25 Friday
Happy Birthday my angel.
Time to get moving and head to the funeral home, I was feeling okay, I thought I can get through this, until .........arriving at the funeral home. That was the most difficult thing of the evening, pulling up to the funeral home and seeing Vince's bike sitting right out front. It's been almost 18 months since I have seen it. I was so very touched to see his bike sitting outside, and that someone took the care and time to think of how much it would mean to me.
What a beautiful tribute to Vince's caricature of the kind of person he was to see so many people come and pay their last respects to him, he really did have a great bunch of family and friends.
We did have Fiori's pizza and ice cream cake back here at the house afterwards.
March 26 Saturday
What a perfect sunny day.
Once again, I'll repeat myself, what GREAT family and friends I'm blessed with.
The service was fantastic!!! That, of course, was because of everyone's hard work to get it organized, from Tia and Julia's beautiful singing, to words so well spoken, Aleeza, Alexandra, R.J. (they did the readings), Father Dave's wonderful Gospel, and the beautiful Eulogy by Andrea, you really did a fantastic job.
After the service we joined together in celebration of Vince's life at Heather and Billy's beautiful home. Wow, they offered their house to us for the wake, which was so wonderful! Heather said that it would be better than going to a restaurant so people could visit with each other and relax. She was right about that! While we were still at the Bresnahan's with only a few of us left, we started telling stories of Vince and I, and of course I told everyone of our first encounter at Nordic Fisheries. I had been receiving unsigned cards of appreciation and "love notes" in my locker at work and wasn't sure who they were from. One day after I asked Vince to help me get something down I couldn't reach and he bumped his head HARD, someone asked him if he got any sense knocked into him. He replied, "No, because I still love you," looking at me!!!! It became clear who had been leaving the notes at that moment, and shortly after he asked me to go on our first date. We had a toast in Vince's honor and Billy said in his toast that Vince was "selfless" -- what a perfect one-word description for Vince, I found it very fitting.
I wish I could sit here and write each of your names and everything you have done, but it's inevitable I would leave someone out and have hurt feelings. Over the past six weeks most who have come here to visit have made new friends and bonds that I hope last you a life time, Big Love!
In closing this chapter of our lives, I know I will take Vince wherever I go, I know I will have my moments of sadness, moments of tears, moments of regret, moments of laughter, moments of the love and respect he had for me. I was so very blessed to have someone who loved me unconditionally, to find a someone who not only loved me, was in love with me but also liked me -- to know this will help me get through this.
He endured 7 plus years of sheer hell and kept on being positive and living a life I admired. I know with God's good graces and the band of family and friends we have, I, along with my children, will be okay.
Again, my door is always open for coffee, conversation, laughter and love.
What a journey this has been, I've learned so much about the goodness of everyone following this journal, that no act is too small and no good deed goes unnoticed. Thank you, from the depths of my heart and soul.
"I love you and will never leave you, during your trials and testings it was then that I carried you".