Tuesday, May 17, 2011


I wrote this yesterday but am only just now getting online to post it.

So I'm at Nae's.  I got here sometime yesterday evening.  If my dad's death taught me anything it's that everyone mourns differently.  Example, I'm a bit of a delayed mourner.  My mom?  God bless her, she hyper focuses on herself.  it keeps her from thinking about what is really, truly wrong.  Being here, in Tony's home, is no exception. Kayli is joking around trying to cheer everyone up.  Nae is generally stoic, occasionally crying and sometimes mad.  Joe's heart is on his sleeve.  Amber is in disbelief.  As par for course, I'm the delayed mourner.  I started out last night with only a few stray tears.  Same with today.  Even played an hour and a half round of Uno with Kayli and Amber, joking all the while.  We shuffled the deck 7x.

Everyone has been coming and going.  I was still able to keep a mostly even demeanor.  Without realizing it my own, personal avalanche was starting.

Joe and his sweetie came in.  You could see in his eyes how much he was hurting.  It took me down a notch and forced me to remember that it was real.  Before that I could have sort of pretend that Tony was at work, or at the store.  Then Don walked in.  This was especially profound as before he arrived pretty much everyone here have been people I knew before I met Tony.  Kept it separate.  Separation is beautiful.  I was introduced to Don purely as Tony's friend. Shit started getting way to real.

Later, I was outside talking to Katie about religion.  Back to even keel.  Nae pulls up.  Travis is with her.  Tony has been telling me for years how I just HAD to meet Travis.  I figured one day he'd visit and I would feel socially awkward and feel intimidated in my usual fashion, and Tony would joke around to help me feel relaxed.  He *got* my social anxiety.  But instead I'm fighting back tears as I meet the man who came to lay his friend to rest.  I felt myself begin to break.

Shortly after this, inside I overhear Nadine talking about Tony's body being worked on or something.  Danger, Will Robinson!!! This dam is-a-breaking!  I walk away.  I cry in the hall.  I think about how Tony and I won't have our talks anymore.  I'm crying too loudly so I move it to the bathroom.  I try to pull myself together and I walk out.  I think about how I won't hear any more of his dirty monologues complete with graphic, insinuating hand gestures.  I escape to the laundry room and cry some more.  Who will need to go to the laundry room?  Then I think about how I will never hear Tony tell me how much he cares about me and that I'm beautiful.  I sob.  Joe must have seen me go in there or I wasn't as quiet as I thought (probably the latter).  He opened the door to say bye.  He hugged me.  It was the hug of a man who has been forever changed by the kindness and understanding of a dear friend.  I wept piteously.

Writing about these feelings has been an outlet for me and so as soon as I could control myself I grabbed my phone. I  went out back to write (courtesy of the Blogger app on my phone).  Overwhelmed by sorrow I "penned" these words.  Only a couple of paragraphs into it Tony's mom arrived.  I only knew it by the mournful cry that only a mother who has lost a child could make.  She screamed her pain and I could feel my heart breaking.  And when I say that I mean I could feel such horrific sorrow coming from this woman that I sincerely wondered if the reverberations from her pained wail could stop my heart from beating.  I couldn't keep from crying if I tried.

I'm doing much better now.  Plans are being made.  Thursday there will be a ceremony and I've been asked to write his eulogy.  It's a tall order but Tony deserves for me to do my best.  Blessed Divine, grant me the power to write something that honors the man I have been blessed to call friend.


Jenn Leonard said...

I love you guys. I'm so sorry I'm not there yet. I'm trying. I love you. Please give Nae & the girls hugs for me. <3

Anonymous said...

johanna I love You. I am honored to say you will be the best to handle the eulogy you have a forever graceful way of doing the devine works of the word of a true art and descriptive manor that is non effensive. I do believe you are suffering truely as we all are and as i said yesterday he will forever be heard in our heads and forever felt in our hearts so to say we are here to support nadine yes we are but all in all we are all here to support each other just like tony did for us i love you girl and u r doing awesome job. your friend Katie

garden_faerie said...

I don't even know the man and you have brought me to tears.

I am so sorry for all of you and the loss you feel.

Alexis Yael said...

So much love, Jo. So much love.

((((((((((((((surround all our loved ones, all who mourn in peace)))))))))))))))