Dear Friends and Family~
I have started to write this “Year in the life” New Years note a thousand and one times. I guess that the closing was what caused me not to be able to start. Knowing that this would be the first holiday note in what seems like forever being signed by just me, not the DeVeny Duo, not Pat and Ali, just me ~ it seemed all too overwhelming. But what a year it has been. It has earned time for reflection. And so here goes:
2011 started off with HOPE! Patrick and I were knee deep, no more like up to our necks in fertility treatments in HOPE that we would be able to start a family. Our very loved money pit we called our condo was on market in HOPES that it would find a new couple to grace its old awesome wood floors. We dreamed of acting on the stage (Pat) and writing books (me) and together fueled the furnace of HOPE in one another. And even as we seemed to have more month then money~ there was HOPE that next month would be better. When fertility treatment after treatment did not work we had HOPE that we would be able to adopt our child~ we knew he/she was out there. When we sold our home and a job offer was given to Pat we decided to pack up and leave our beloved Chicago with HOPE that this move would provide us new adventures .We laughed in the face of hardship, we danced in the joy of the simple things, and we loved each and every moment for the first 4 months of 2011.
Then on April 29th WE became just ME! During those hours in the hospital I was given the LUXUARY of being able to be just Pat’s wife. Our amazing friends and family made it so I did not have to pick up a phone, answer a message, respond to a text… somehow magically these wonderful people made sure information was shared, people got on planes, reservations we made, friends/family were picked up, and all I had to do was be by Patrick’s side and make medical decisions. I will never find the words to thank those of you who spent endless hours on the 28th and 29th with me! And at 2:16 in the afternoon as the sun flooded Pat’s room I laid with my head on his chest singing our wedding song as he peacefully slipped away.
The memorials, celebrations, funeral… from Chicago to Denver… from Greely to the top of Brenner mountain… it all has touched my soul. Every event was 100% Patrick. I thank each of you for being a part of that celebration of life. We roasted him, cried over the loss, and celebrated the laughter he shared. And then it all hit me, and then the loss of my soul mate became clear. I love to say that these past 8 months have been easy, but they have been the hardest of my life. And then there is YOU. Maybe you sent a card. Maybe you answered a phone at 1am when sleep was far from my life. Maybe you shared a meal with me, or a memory. Maybe you showed support on my blog or a simple note on Facebook. Maybe you sent a random gift. Maybe you made me smile on a dark day. Maybe you said a prayer at night that somehow found its way into my day. Maybe you have shared a story about Pat with a stranger. Maybe you have walked back into my life after many years to help hold me up. Maybe you did not reached out at all~ teaching me to learn to stand on my own two feet. Maybe you have planted a tree; made a donation, spread some kindness to another in his honor. Maybe you have picked me up from an airport, put me up, or shared your space with me. Maybe you have left me a message that is yet to be returned. Maybe you laughed really hard when you thought of a time you spent with Trick. Maybe you told the ones you love in your life how you feel because the DeVeny Duo always did that. Maybe you listened more. Maybe you gave selflessly. Maybe you spent more time with your loved ones. Maybe you gave me hug~ even from far away. Maybe you cried with me. Maybe you laughed and reminded me of what I had. Maybe you let me scream. Maybe you accepted me for who I am and how I feel ~ the good and the bad moments. Maybe you encouraged me. Maybe you inspired me. Maybe you helped me find my voice. Maybe you sent well wishes and peaceful thoughts from a distance.
But with all the maybes the one thing YOU did… the one thing each and every person in my life did for me ~ you instilled HOPE back into my heart! So as we enter a new year, one that Pat has not been part of, I HOPE that each of you has the love, adventure, joy and peace that you have brought to me.
Around the world and back again~