Wednesday, September 16, 2009


The telephone ringing awakes her, half sleep, half alert she answers:
- Hi, this is Barbara
- Is this Mrs. Roberts?
- Yes! Who is asking?
- I’m afraid I have sad news ma’am…

From that moment the world stop existing, it was like walking through a nightmare from which there was no possible escape. She wanted to believe it was a mistake that they got the wrong identification… but the empty side of her bed and his un-answered phone tells her otherwise. In despair she called her parents, so they can come to her house to look after the children and go with her to the morgue. She can’t do this on her own!
On her way to the morgue she keeps repeating to herself that her husband can’t be dead, that he did not commit suicide… How could he do something like that! How could he betray her that way! She was really distressed; her father was rubbing her back while gazing at her with great concern as she didn’t show any visible reaction… Her face looking like stone made, hiding very well the storm rising underneath.

Seeing the body brought her back to reality, slapping her with the brutal comprehension that he was gone… that he was not coming back. Suddenly she was overtaken by an uncontrollable rage and she started beating the body, crying in despair while asking a thousand times: “Why? Why? Why, did you have to do it? Why?”

Barbara read his “goodbye” letter hundreds of times, until her mother took it away, afraid of what her daughter could do next. She didn’t need it anymore, the words were implanted in her memory forever:

“I’m done with this lie; I can’t keep living like this any longer! I’ve been lying too long that I lost track of what is real and what is not. I’m a tormented soul, who has been searching for happiness endlessly without any strike of luck. I’m tired of living by the book, of doing what is considered right instead of following my heart. When I was young my soul yearned for something different… I wanted to travel the world and paint it all the way through… I dreamt of wild adventures, knowing different cultures, learning different things, falling passionately in love with life and always be able to walk free. But instead I was hooked by life events… married too young to a pregnant girlfriend (who I didn’t love but could not dare to say so). Then getting a dull job to maintain the house and the new family… and there went all my dreams down the drain! I just can’t do it anymore!! I can’t sleep walk every day, I can’t continue hating my life the way I do!
Dying is the only way out!


Not even a single word to her or to the children; until the very end he was thinking of himself! Barbara dries her tears with the back of her hand and with a fierce determination she stands, after a momentary pause -to breath deep and charge herself - she gently looks at her mother and says: “Let’s go mammy, let’s get everything ready for Tom’s burial, we do not have too much time… let’s go”

Tom was buried with genuine sorrow, by his family, colleagues, friends and others but none from Barbara. She could not forgive him for living a deceiving life and for pulling her into it. She ought to have had much more than sympathy from the man she loved. She also sacrificed her dreams for their future together; she carried his children with honor and always put Tom first…. “And for what?” she says to herself with a bitter smile and a heartbroken tear running down her face. “Why did he never share his dreams with me? Why I couldn’t be part of them? Wasn’t I more than a housewife and the woman to relieve his physical needs? Was I the killer of his dreams? Was it all I was? How could he blame me for his “unhappy life”!"
She is the one to deal with the aftermath of his suicide and to answer their children’s questions. She can’t tell them that their daddy killed himself because he considered his family a burden and the cause of his miserable life. With resolution she says to herself: “There is no way I’m going to allow him to destroy our life like this. He will not take us down with him! We are goanna get out of this mess, we’re goanna make it! We lost him but we will not loose the lesson…”
Bitterness, anger and fear dominate her emotions right now, but they will ease as time pass by and as part of the normal cleaning process. The day will come for her to mourn her husband’s death with tenderness and understanding.

“Why? Why did he have to do it?”
She keeps asking herself, aware that the only person who can answer that is not longer there and is not coming back…

© 2009 Gabriela Abalo – Author

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Edward said...

A sad story indeed! But i like the way Barbra comes out fighting and refusing to be destroyed by her husbands act. I admire her, she is a very strong woman ......i think a role model!!

Gabriela Abalo said...

Thank u Edu

I agree with u Barbara is a strong role model... she deals with the aftermath of her husband dead the best that she can and is determined to overcome the situation with the strength that she gets from the love for her children. She will not allow his husband deeds to destroy the whole family.
A great real woman!
Thanks for the comment and your continues support.

Love and Light