Kocherla 1 Honors/Gifted Literature- Flanigan- 3rd Goodbye From his chocolate skin to his soft brown eyes deep and intense. He was every thing I'd ever wanted and so much more. The perfect man that I'd dreamed of. From the days when I was small wearing a pillowcase over my head and holding wildflowers in my hand walking down the stairs as I hummed the bridal march. Walking towards a figment of my imagination. Towards the most perfect creature to ever grace the face of this earth. And though I'd learned since then that fairy tales can't come true, mine did.
I wasn't expecting love when I found it but that's how it always is isn't it? The best things in life are accidental. Penicillin was an accident right? But love is nothing like Penicillin. The only thing love can heal is a broken heartÃ¢ÂÂ¦ but it can also cause one.
That's what I learned from him. So I guess it all happened for a reason. Maybe God was trying to teach me something. That I should put my faith in him and not in people. But I wish he had told me in a less painful way. He could have spelled it out in the stars or something but I probably wouldn't have believed it anyway. I would have thought I was crazy or drunk or maybe both. That's how I am. I'd never believe anything that couldn't be explained. That's why I'm a stockbroker and not an astrologist like my mother. That's also why he took me by surprise. He was every thing I wasn'tÃ¢ÂÂ¦and I loved him for it.
He believed in fate and destiny. He wasn't superstitious or anything weird like that but he said he believed in miracles. The first words he spoke to me were "We're destined to be together I can feel it." If any other guy had said that to me I would have laughed and thought it was just a line. But this was different because I kinda felt it too. I knew he was special because I'd never felt that way before. Wild and crazy and willing to put my faith and trust in something that I wasn't sure even existed.
The time I spent with him was wonderful. He was the sweetest, most polite, and kindest person I'd ever known. He didn't try to pressure me into anything. Our relationship was very casual. We were more like best friends than like boyfriend and girlfriend. He was also very intelligent. He walked around quoting Shakespeare "Lord what fools these mortals be when it comes to love" he said. He believed that love was something unexplainable something supernatural. And I was beginning to believe it too.
He did the sweetest things. Candle-light dinners, moonlight strolls in the park, Rose petals that led me to the bedroomÃ¢ÂÂ¦but one day he outdid himselfÃ¢ÂÂ¦ You should have seen them. They came in the middle of a very frustrating meeting. I heard a knock on the door and a voice said "Delivery for Sharon Mayfair". I didn't remember what I'd been expecting, but that morning I didn't remember much of anything. I told him to put it in my office. He said "You sure?" That's weird I thought and I wanted to see what he were so reluctant to put in my office, but those old geezers at the meeting were getting restless so I guessed it would have to wait. After the meeting I went to my office. I had forgotten all about the delivery. There was a big crowd blocking the door and they were all oohing and aahing about something. I pushed my way through the crowd, made my way to the door and unlocked it. As soon as I walked in I saw them. Roses. Everywhere. 730 to be exact. One for every day we'd been together. I started crying. He was so wonderful! I couldn't believe he remembered. I mean even I didn't remember! The whole crowd was still there and I heard a loud "Aww!" Kocherla 2 The card read "To Sharon. You are the sun that lights up my sky, my reason for life, my joy, and my pride. Would you be my bride?" I gasped and before I could say anything I heard a knock. I turned around but it wasn't coming from the door it was coming from the window. I opened the blinds and almost had a heart attack. There he was standing on the ledge with a rose in his hand. I opened the window and let him in. The whole crowd was quiet. Then he got down on one knee took my hand and said, "I love you more than life itself. Would you make me the happiest man in the world and be my wife?" "No" I said and the crowd gasped. I continued, " I won't just be your wife I'll be much more than that. I'll love you and honor you and cherish you and be your best friend until the day death parts us" The crowd finally exhaled and I heard loud applause as he took the ring that was hidden in the petals of the rose and slipped it on my finger. It was beautiful. He stood up and took me in his arms and kissed me. I looked at him. He had tears in his eyes. That was the only time I ever did see him cry.
We had a small wedding soon after. It was beautiful. Married life was great. You know how people say that once you get married the man you're married to is like a totally different person from the man you dated? Well that wasn't the case at all. He was still every bit as wonderful as he had been before. He still sent flowers and made candle light dinners and took moonlight walks in the park. It's amazing how he had the time to do all this. He was a very busy man you know. He was an internist at the local hospital and I'm not saying that he was home all the time but he managed to make time for me and that is something I always loved about him. He cared.
We had been married for 3 years when the accident happened. I remember that awful phone call. "Is this Mrs. McKay?" the voice had asked. "Yes." I replied. "Who is this?" "This is Officer Bailey of the New York Police Department." My heart almost stopped beating. I sat down quickly and asked, "What's wrong?" "Is Mark all right?" "We regret to inform you that your husband has been involved in a car accident." "Oh my god is he all right?" "I'm afraid we don't know ma'am he's being taken to the Brooklyn hospital as we speak." "Thank you officer I'll be down there as soon as I can." "Ma'am?" He said as I prepared to hang up. "I'm sorry" "So am I." I said, "So am I" I raced down there as fast as I could I ran every red light and every stop sign. I'm surprised I even remembered how to get there. Tears were rolling down my face so hard it was like trying to drive in the pouring rain. My head was swirling with thoughts and what if's. I tried not to think about them but I couldn't help it. My face was soaked by the time I got there. I ran in and to the elevator. The lady at the desk didn't try to stop me. I think she knew who I was. I then remembered that I didn't know what floor he was on. The elevator stopped and a man stepped in. He was a police officer. His nametag read Kenneth Bailey. Officer Bailey! I stuck my foot between the doors before they closed and said "I'm Sharon McKay. Could you please tell me where my husband is?" "He's on this floor ma'am. Room 426." "Thank you" I said and stepped out of the elevator. "Ma'am?" he called. "Be strong." I smiled weakly. I went to his room and waited outside. I prayed to God to save him. "I'm so scared" I said out loud "I'm not ready for him to leave" Then I just buried my face in my hands and cried.
"Mrs. McKay." I heard a voice say. I opened my eyes and stood up. "Yeah?" I said. He held out his hand and I shook it. "I'm Dr. Nelson." "Is he okay?" I asked. "He's Kocherla 3 in stable condition." "Thank you doctor," I said, "You don't know how much you've done for me." Then I just hugged him. "There, there" he said, "it'll be all right." "What happened to him?" I asked. "He was involved in an accident with a drunk driver. The other gentleman died instantly. Your husband is very lucky to be alive. But I regret to inform you that he took a nasty blow to the head and is suffering from amnesia." I gasped, "you meanÃ¢ÂÂ¦" I couldn't bring myself to complete. The doctor nodded his head and finished what I couldn't "he won't remember you or any of his life before the accident" "will he get his memory back?" I asked. "Receiving one's memory back in a situation like this is highly improbable if not impossible" "I suggest you prepare yourself for the worst." "Can I see him?" I asked. "He's resting right now and the best thing for you would be to go home and do the same." I nodded "I'll be back tomorrow" I said. "And Mrs. McKay don't worry. I'm sure God will take care of everything" I went home and tried to sleep but I couldn't. I kept looking at the empty pillow next to me. "Oh Mark," I murmured. And started to cry again. I woke up at 7:45 and took a shower, got dressed and went to the hospital. Dr. Nelson was already there. He said Mark was awake and that I could see him. I walked in not knowing what to expect. I saw a nurse and a person in the bed. "Is that-" the nurse nodded Mark rolled over in his bed and faced me. I breathed a sigh of relief. He was okay. "Hey baby" I said. "Who is she?" he asked the nurse pretending I wasn't there. "That's Sharon. She's your wife, Mark." My heart sank. I'd forgotten. He didn't know who I was.
It was two weeks before Mark could come home. He had to undergo physical therapy because he'd broken his leg. I visited him everyday, but he never talked to me. I would try to start a conversation by saying "So what'd you do today?" He would say, "I sat here trying to remember who the hell I am." He would stare out the window listlessly and say things like "I wonder if birds can get amnesia." The trip home was awkward. It was like being in the car with a total stranger. I told him he could ask me anything he wanted to know. He was silent. When we got home he asked whose house it was. I said it was our house. He admired a painting by our mantle and asked who had painted it. I paused and said, "you did." He sat on the couch and said "what am I gonna do now?" "Don't worry," I said, "we'll get through this together." I reached over to put my hand on his shoulder but he moved away. I pulled my hand back. "I'm sorry," he said, "I just can't remember." I took off work for a week to help him adjust. It was like having a stranger in the house. He slept in the guest room not in our bed. He barely spoke to me except to ask where something was. It was hard for me. I would wake up each morning to the same sad reality; the man I loved didn't love me. He didn't even know me. It was hard not to hug him or kiss him or hold him. Especially when he was right there. But I reminded myself that he wasn't the same person. I had a hard time sleeping. I would stare at the ceiling for hours wondering what he was thinking. Wondering if he would ever remember. I would stare at the empty pillow next to me and pretended he was there staring back at me. I went to sleep each day pretending that nothing was wrong. That it was only a bad dream and I would wake up the next morning and he would be there beside me. But he never was.
Kocherla 4 The people at work were very sympathetic. I received many cards and visitors to my office. They all said the same thing. "Be strong" and "don't worry." " How can I not worry?" I thought, "The man I love doesn't even know me!!!!" I knew they were only trying to be supportive but I wished they would just shut up and go to hell. Some woman even came to me and said, "I know how it must feel." I smiled and said thank you but inside I hated her. How could she possibly know what I was going through! How could she know how broken my heart was? Mark stayed home. I don't know what he did but when I came home I would often find him looking through albums filled with pictures of him and me. When I asked what he was doing he said he was trying to remember.
Two months had passed and one morning as I was getting ready for work he came into the room and asked, "where are you going?" "To work" "What am I going to do all day?" I paused. I hadn't really thought about that. It's not like I expected him to stay in the house forever. "What do you want to do?" I asked. He thought and said, "I want to go somewhere." "Where do you want to go?" I asked, "I don't know" he shrugged "anywhere" I thought about what I should do and finally decided to give him my cell phone and office number. I told him to call when he wanted me to pick him up. I gave him my credit card and told him that he could buy whatever he wanted. He could tell I was worried and told me to stop and that he'd be fine.
I worried about him anyway. Should I have taken the day off and gone with him? I mean was it right to let a man who doesn't remember anything wander around alone in the center of New York City? I wasn't myself that day. A very important client called and I had to speak to him. He was asking all these stupid questions and I got so sick of it that I just hung up on him. Normally if I had done something like that, even if by accident, I would have been furious with myself but today I just didn't care. What did my job matter? Nothing. The only person I ever loved was gone, replaced by a stranger whom I didn't even know. Bruce, he was my manager, could tell that I wasn't feeling quite like myself so he told me to stay home for a while longer and get some rest. I thought that was awfully sweet of him but later figured out that he meant stay home for good.
I got home that afternoon and remembered that I had told Mark to call the office. I didn't feel like calling them and telling them to forward the call. So I called him myself. The phone rang and I heard a ringing in the house. He hadn't taken it. I slumped down on the couch and though I knew I should have been worried but I was tired of worrying. I was tired of everything. I was tired of life.
I fell asleep on the couch and was awakened by the ringing of a doorbell. I ran to answer it. It was Mark. Two men were holding him up. He looked like hell. I could tell he was drunk. He collapsed on the floor. The men and I brought him over to the couch. They explained that they had found him like this on a street corner. They looked at the name on the credit card he had and looked up the address in a phone book. I thanked them and they left. He slept for hours. When he woke up, he walked into the kitchen and asked, "What happened?" "You got drunk and passed out." He laughed and said, "So that's what being drunk feels like?" "Cool." I was furious even though I probably had no right to be. "What is up with you?" I said, "This isn't like you." He stared at me for a long moment Kocherla 5 and then he just blew up. "This isn't like me?" He shouted, "Well guess what? I don't even know who the hell I am!" "I don't know you!" "I don't know anything!" "Let me tell you something, the man you knew is dead, he died in that crash. This is me. And I am not your husband." Then he just turned, walked out and slammed the door.
I never saw him again nor did I try to look for him. He was right. He wasn't the man I love. The man I love is dead. He died four months ago I just didn't want to accept it. I cried for so long but now I realize that this is the only way to stop the pain. There's nothing left to live for. Maybe I'll see him in heaven. Maybe he'll remember meÃ¢ÂÂ¦maybeÃ¢ÂÂ¦ I think I'll go nowÃ¢ÂÂ¦ Goodbye cruel worldÃ¢ÂÂ¦