So that was it.
I was finished. I was done. I sit here watching his expressionless face and listening to the steady beeping that has become the music of my soul these last few years. I am at a lost.
His parents told me that they would allow me to visit for no more than five years and at anytime during visiting hours. How do you grant someone five years of communication, of visitation and then cut that person off like automatically they'll have a life or plan to fall back onto? I don't have a plan nor do I have a life outside the walls of this hospital, the perimeter of this room. I have no life without my Gabe.
This was the last year so in January I had decided that in the hours I spent here when no one but doctors and nurses interrupted me, I would tell him his story. Our history. During the few times his family had actually walked in and heard me tell him something of his past they would find a way to … punish me.
Knowing I would give them privacy by leaving the room, they would for weeks at a time stay until visiting hours were over. All day I would sit in the hard chairs of the waiting room, hoping they would let me see him that day. Those weeks I nearly lost it.
Anything not concerning him was a fleeting thought in my mind and when I held I held on to a thought I would forget just as quickly. When I would go home at night I would forget the easiest way and when I would go to the bathroom I always ended up washing my hands and flushing at least three times. That went with brushing and trying to eat. I constantly forgot things. My life was built around one person, without him I was and will be lost. I am lost.
Now that I'm finished, there's nothing more to say really. I don't even have a job anymore and I'm barely home so my bills aren't that high. I haven't really gone grocery shopping in five years. I only stop in to get milk or something like that. Most everything I eat comes out of the hospital cafeteria, a vending machine, fast food place or a can or box, and that's when I remember to eat.
I reach out my hand and run my fingers through his hair lovingly. The strands are smooth as silk against my fingers. His face while appearing all man was still as soft as a baby's. If only he could open his eyes. If only I could hear his voice one last time.
The beeping the heart monitor seems to be slowing down. I glance and the screen and see that his heart rate is dropping. I pull on the chord for the nurse as his heart rate goes flat. I burst through the door screaming for help, for someone to help him.
A doctor rushes past me with nurses and a crash cart. Someone pulls me away as I try to get to him but they won't let me go. I turn to see who is there and it's his father. I jerk away from him, wiping at my tears and walk into the room. A nurse tells me that I can't be here but I don't listen. I watch as they try to shock my love back to life.
They try again.
I'm frantic and I let the nurse push me out of the room and into another where she gives me a shot to sedate me. I don't want to close my eyes but I can't fight it. I ask for him, how he's doing but no one answers me. By their silence I assume he's dead and close my eyes as if the same would happen to me.
Hours later I awaken and immediately search for someone who can give me answers on him. I spot his father watching me. "Why are you here?"
"He's asking for you," he tells me. "He won't see anyone else."
A nurse comes in and helps me to my feet before making me sit in a wheelchair. She rolls me down the hall to elevator and I watch as we go up to the sixth floor. We exit the elevator and go down the hall I know so well. When we reach his room, he turns his head and looks at me. I begin to cry as I'm wheeled to him.
I take his hand and kiss it before kissing him frantically. He's weak but he takes me in his strong arms and hugs me with all his might. He whispers his love for me over and over in his strained voice. I return the favor and tell him to not to strain himself talking to me.
I talk to him about my life over the last few years and he kisses me every so often. He still hasn't let me go. I leave out my spats with his family and the deal. We fall asleep in each other's arms, glad to be able to. We now know we have the rest of our lives with each other, that we don't want anyone else. Sure, he's paralyzed from the waist down but I couldn't care less.
He's my Gabe and I'm his Beth. And that's all that matters.