A Codependent Fairy Tale

She changed after he died and God knows, she was strange enough before his death, but then he died and she melted into nothing, shuffling down the hallways clothed in someone else’s skin and we all realized that we were losing her and there was nothing to be done because we could see that her soul had fled with him into the death tunnel, even as her lungs continued to breathe and her blood continued to pump, even as she slept, as she walked, as she drew breath; yes, this woman in our mother’s body was now a stranger and even though we had all suspected that she still loved him as much as she hated him, we really didn’t know and we couldn’t have imagined the depth or the width of her self-imposed restraint and we never saw the chains that she had wrapped around her feelings, no, not until we saw how the grief broke her, watched the sorrow loosen her clenched pain, saw the anguish strip away her self-control, screaming silently as her imprisoned mind flung itself free, breaking like a child as she mourned his passing, regretting what could have, should have and never would be because now, all hope was annihilated as they lowered his body into the ground and we cried for him not knowing we should also be crying for her because he was dead and she was alive and he was gone so it was over, nothing could ever be fixed, repaired, restored or renewed and death, his death, the death of her first love, our father’s death, had written the final chapter of their insane love story, a fatal romance that had self-imploded thirty-five years ago, but did not die until the day he passed, dead and done and so this, his death, this was the tragic end of a waltz that should have been sat out because the band had played the wrong song, composing a doomed allegiance from the very first chord and we should have known, but how could we have known that his death would drain the spirit from her, crush her so totally and now, now we have to decide…shock treatment or lobotomy?

4 thoughts on “A Codependent Fairy Tale”

  1. Gosh, this sounds like it was written for me, it is so hard to be part of reality and not just slip away with the loved one, all the thoughts, the memories, thirty years for me is a long time, how does one go on, alone? All I can say is thank goodness for young kids or i would be going there too.


    1. We were teenage sweethearts, married young, had three kids and divorced over thirty years ago, but when I found out that he had died a few days ago, it felt like he had walked away yesterday. My feelings overwhelmed me and this not so Fairy Tale is the result. This story is creative non-fiction, based on very real feelings. My little ones did get me through the years after the divorce. They gave me a reason. Thank you for visiting me, hugs, Jeanne Marie


  2. So beautifully written! I wish I could wrap up in one page what you have written…such an art! Working with bereaved children for several years, it is true how the children who lose one parent are orphans temporarily…until the other parent has mourned enough to resume her/his role as parent. Sad and so true to reality, this story.


Love to hear from you...

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s