I have learned more about my husband in the last month since he passed away than I knew about him the nineteen years we were together. He had many secrets, a tortured soul, a low self-esteem that fed a wounded spirit. I never really knew or saw the person he truly was. He struggled daily with simple decisions, he needed someone to make a choice for him, even when driving if it meant going left or right. For me there were times it was frustrating during our life together, he was the man and I wanted him to take the lead. I didn’t want to be the dominant one in the relationship, I wanted a man to look after me, someone strong, someone I can look up to, someone I can go to for advice. Now when I look back I understand more his behavior, his secrets were causing most of his issues. I learned even the schools he said he went to weren’t true, stigma associated with vocational schools. When that came to light I was shocked. There is more but what is important here is the life lost, his, he lost a life he never knew. Things could have been so different he didn’t need to hide who he was from me, I fell in love with the man I met on the outside, that means the whole package goes along, past included. Your education means nothing, skills you have that are learned over time , on the job skills, from a forty-year career far out way any thing you would learn in high school. During our nineteen years together we had a separation, we worked it out, we fought, we went to counseling, we loved, we hated, we yelled, we were silent, we were together till death do us part. I think he really did love me, and only kept secrets for good reasons. One of his sisters said he thought he was never good enough for me. I wish he had talked to me about some of this. But, all of this is water under the bridge. He is gone and I am left to pick up the pieces. I am not bitter, I loved him, I miss him, I cry often. If someone comes along that catches my eye so be it. I’m not going to say I won’t get involved with anyone because I don’t know if I will or not, it all depends if the right one comes along like Jim did. I was comfortable with him, he accepted me for who I was, faults and all how ironic. He knew my past, my secrets, he knew me and how I ticked. I don’t think I will ever find another Jim, that’s what hurts the most.