Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta

An imaginary conversation with my late husband on All Souls’ Day

By LORRAINE V. MURRAY, Commentary | Published October 29, 2015

Me: What am I supposed to do, my love, now that you’re gone? I can’t bear being away from you! I’m so unhappy.

Him: I wish I were still there with you, but it wasn’t my choice, you know that. God called me home that day—and I wish we could have gone together. I know what a shock this is for you, Lo, and I want you to carry on as best you can.2015 10 29 GB MURRAY An imaginary conversation with my late husband

I’m so proud of what you’ve done so far—taking care of the house, paying the bills—even cooking! See, you can do these things without me, and you’re stronger than you might believe.

Me: But life isn’t fun anymore without you. It just feels like, “Well, I got through another day.” You had a way of making supper on the deck seem like a celebration, even on an ordinary day. Now I’m alone most nights, and supper is another thing to get through.

Him: You did finally venture onto the back deck though, right? I’ve seen you there—and I was so happy you could do that on your own. Oh, honey bear, I know how hard this is—and I wish I could sweep you up to heaven with me right now—but I can’t.

Me: I remember when we used to talk about death, something you didn’t like to discuss, but of course, your melancholy wife had to bring it up now and again—because losing you was what I feared the most. And now the worst has happened!

Him: I know, honey bear—I know that’s how you see it, but you haven’t lost me. I really am still with you! And I’m so thankful that we had just returned from a really good family vacation. There were no regrets, no unspoken words between us. I knew you loved me, and you knew the same. And you can’t imagine how surprised I was when my heart stopped suddenly on that day when I was walking home to you!

Me: I wanted you to take your cellphone, but you didn’t—and then later I wondered if you might have called me, and I could have rescued you.

Him: There was no warning. One minute I was walking—and the next I was somewhere else. It was like stepping through a doorway that led to a mysterious and beautiful realm that I want you to see someday.

Me: I feel like you walked through that mysterious doorway, and I’m left here without a key.

Him: I wish I could explain everything, the plan, but it’s unfolding, all in God’s time. We have to surrender to him, completely. We have to trust. And I know that isn’t easy, honey.

Me: I wish you could come back, for just a second, so I could see your face again and kiss you. Just one more time. And sit out on the deck with you one more time, and have movie night downstairs one more time, and drive to the beach, one more time, and carve pumpkins together one more time, and—everything, Jef, everything.

And then I realize that we had everything. Thirty-three years of your amazing meals, beach trips, boat adventures (remember when we saw the manatees?), carving pumpkins, sitting on the deck listening to our favorite frog, watching our hummingbirds, going to Tolkien events and dressing up as hobbits (well, you were a wizard). We really had everything.

Him: We did have such a good life, Lo—and we still do, but it’s different now. I want you to remember all these happy memories when you’re feeling sad—and thank God for the life we had together.

Me: I do, my love. I thank God every night for the years we had together, also for the people who are watching over me now—inviting me to meals, listening to me, hugging me, praying for me. I also thank God for sending you to me. We had one of those storybook romances, didn’t we?

Him: We really did. And you know how the storybooks always end, right?

Me: They lived happily ever after.

Him: Yes, and so will we. I’ve gone ahead to prepare a place for you, where we can both be happy together forever. Do you believe me?

Me: Yes, with all my heart.

Him: I love you still, and I always will.

Me: Same here, now and forever. Please continue praying for me.

Him: I’ll never stop.

Me: Good night! Sweet dreams—if people dream in heaven.

Him: Good night, honey bear. Until tomorrow.

Artwork (“Sonnet”) by Jef Murray. Readers may contact Lorraine at