Donna J. Clarke

It's been a month and I still don't know if I can do this. I lost the single best part of me when Donna died last month. She was my courage, my confidence, and my strength. We were married for thirty-one years and every single one of those years was better than the one before it.

I can't even blame Covid. We were both already vaccinated and waiting for the restrictions to lift. We had a whole list of things we wanted to do first. If anything, the pandemic did me a favor. Working from home gave me a year and a half of being together without losing the time being at the office or commuting. I did the math. The pandemic gave me the equivalent of an extra 162 days with her. So thanks for that, I guess.

I'm finding ways to trick myself for now. Her flip-flops are still out on the front door mat--the sparkly blue ones that made her smile every time she wore them. It feels more like coming home that way. I let the dishes stack up in the sink for a couple of days, because I can't handle washing one fork, one knife, and one plate.

But this isn't about me. It's about the bright, fearless woman who made my world a better place just by being in it. It's about the woman who decided she wanted to go to film school at forty, moved from the city where she was born and raised, and graduated from NYU with honors. It's about the woman who made me write when I tried to find excuses to avoid the work. It's about the woman who could talk to anyone and made friends everywhere she went.

I'll do more later, in a more appropriate way, but this is what I can do for now. She was the best part of me. I will love her and miss her for the rest of my life.

Donna Joy Clarke
2/23/1952 - 5/18/2021