Today my parents would have been married 34 years. This is them, right around the time they married.

To those who are new, my father passed 11 weeks after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last year. He died 8 months ago, and I know that holidays will be hard for a while.

I can’t imagine how hard today is for my mom. I called her today and she tried to put on a brave face, but I know it’s so hard. It breaks my heart.

I spent 30 years hearing about how they were best friends. The joke always was that each one wanted to be the first one to die so they wouldn’t be stuck without the other. When my dad got diagnosed, they didn’t have any illusions that he would “beat” stage IV pancreatic cancer. My dad looked at my mom and said, “I win.”

This is them about 5 days before he died:

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In his last weeks my mom and I did most of the caregiving. We stayed up for days when the delirium set in, making sure he didn’t set the house on fire or fall and hurt himself. It’s incredibly hard to see one’s parent like that, but I can’t imagine how it is to see your partner that way.

A year ago today my dad posted this picture of the Valentine’s Day card my mom got him on Facebook:

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How fucking weird is it when you are mildly embarrassed by this sort of thing one year and the next year it breaks your heart.

ETA: I’ll be going out with my husband soon, but I want to thank everyone for all of your kind words.