BOOM! This loud bang wakes me up mid-air as I hop out of bed, I turn the ceiling light on and notice Marty on the floor. I say “babe you ok?” panic doesn’t set in right away because Marty plays around a lot and the first thing that flashes in my mind is “this MF plays too much.” I notice that he is moving in a way that I’ve never seen and he is making a noise, almost like painful gasps of air. Realizing that this isn’t a joke I tried to turn him over on his back, he was rock solid; panic sets in. I called 911 and became hysterical screaming that my husband was having another heart attack, the dispatcher asks was I sure he didn’t take any drugs, this sets me on fire almost three months later, but we can talk about that later. The dispatcher says they are sending help and to call back if he stops breathing. I became even more hysterical smacking him in the mouth, trying to push his tongue back in and get him to become alert. His eyes were so big and red, the pain he must’ve felt still makes me cringe. At this point, my sobs wake up my kids who stood frozen at their bedroom doors watching me try to do anything to get their dad back. I hollered to them to get back in their rooms and watch TV, everything was ok— kids never listen. All of a sudden I heard one big loud gasp and Marty’s body fell completely limp. I called back 911 to let them know he stopped breathing and as I was on the phone and Eddystone Police Officer ran up the steps. We team lifted Marty on his back and the first responders were up the steps next. Everyone kept asking me about drugs. I was so upset trying to tell them that my husband just survived two heart attacks this past February and he has stents in all the quadrants of his heart, please just focus on this. We didn’t do drugs. They rotated doing CPR on my husband while one searched his pockets and wallet. This was all in 30 minutes, it felt like a lifetime. It still feels like it took a lifetime. I called my best friend while they were trying to shock his heart, I needed someone to keep my kids in their rooms. I just kept crying please don’t let him die here, not in front of these kids. Please. Please. Don’t you dare let him die. 6:01 am they pronounced my Smarty dead. I will never forget the look on the man’s face while he told me there was nothing left they could do. I asked to be with him while we waited for the coroner to come, and was told no. If Marty died in a hospital I would have had time and privacy to say goodbye. I came downstairs and fell into the wall, this can’t be real. It just can’t. Not me, not again. Anyone but him. I think I had to tell the kids at least 10 times before they understood that their Daddy wasn’t going to wake up. My baby girl, the light of his life, cried instantly. She just kept screaming “Daddy!” When the medical examiner came I begged her to let me say goodbye before they took him out, and she told me to keep it quick. My husband was surrounded by 3 cops with a trach in his mouth and his eyes left wide open limp on our bedroom floor. I was in my nightgown but got on the floor anyway so I could kiss his cheek and say goodbye while they watched and gave me no privacy. That was our goodbye. When they took my husbands body out my son let out a cry I can’t erase from my mind. That was it. We all just sat on the floor in shock.
The trauma of 7/7/17 keeps me up at night. I can replay this over and over in my mind. How did this happen? He was fine! The Cardiologist gave him a clean bill of health that Monday. How can he be dead 4 days later?? We were just in the bed laughing a few hours prior. When you see me and I look tired, it’s because I am. If you see me and my eyes are puffy its because I just stopped crying when I saw you coming. When you ask me every day if I’m ok- I don’t even answer that shit anymore. I’m in a constant state of shock, you are lucky if I remember to shower. The kids can be kept busy and distracted, but the hell that they face at home… no, they aren’t ok either. I don’t know how we could be.
They say journaling is a healer, so I’m trying this. If the only thing this does is make me less of a daily mess, then it’s a win.