October 3: Remembering Brendan’s Funeral

The October Diary is a work of fiction being released serially during October 2015. A new installment is posted each day. Find posts you’ve missed here.

October 3rd

I’ve been thinking about Brendan’s funeral. I blocked it out for so long, but for these past couple of days those memories have become a common daydream.

I can see myself. My ugly self. I couldn’t stop crying. No one thought that was odd. After all, I was pregnant, and my husband was dead.

“Hormones make the grief worse, poor thing,” I heard someone whisper.

But hormones and grief weren’t the only reasons I was crying.

I couldn’t look anyone in the eye. Particularly his mother. My mother-in-law. I couldn’t even speak to her. She took my hand and squeezed it. I wanted to pull away, but I didn’t. I wondered if she’d feel my guilt through her hand like a lie detector.

I didn’t want to talk, but people kept talking to me. They told me what a wonderful wife I was. How lucky he was to have me. How he would live on in our child.

Every kind word was a blow. If I could stop sobbing I might have screamed at them, “It’s my fault! I killed him! He’s dead because of me!” But I could barely breathe through my tears much less confess.

No one would have believed me anyway. They’d reassure me it was an accident because it had looked like an accident. They wouldn’t understand.

I went home and curled up on the bed trying to remind myself or convince myself that I did it for my baby. I did it for Annie. After all, that’s what I had thought at the time, but now I suspected I did it for me. I did it because I was afraid. Either way my wonderful, sweet husband was dead.

Is it my turn now?

Was this diary some sick joke? First my reserved, level-headed mom said she was afraid of seeing a man from her nightmares, and then she claimed to have killed my dad? None of this made any sense. I kept reading, waiting for a punchline. This couldn’t be real. Could it? And if I found it so unbelievable why was it giving me chills?

*     *     *     *

What happens next? Read the next part of the story here.

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