May Was the Cruellest Month (So Far)

May Day is my brother Tony’s birthday. He was born in 1966. He died on May 3, 1987, in a motorcycle wreck. So every year at about mid April, I get the blues. On his birthday, I usually post a collage on Facebook with the message, “Miss ya, Tony.”

My brother-in-law Wes was born on May 12, 1970. He died in August of 1997 during a car accident. So every year, on his birthday, I post a photo and message on Facebook saying, “Miss ya, buddy.”

My husband Harly was born on May 17, 1969. He died in October of 1997 from a genetic liver disorder. So every year, I post a collage on Facebook with the message, “Miss ya, Har.”

Once I am passed those three rough days, I feel better. But this year, on Harly’s birthday, I got a bonus. While I was pulling weeds in my backyard, my 95 pound black lab/Newfoundland Gus was chasing my pitbull Ginger and I got in the way. Gus came running at me top speed and hit me just about head-on. It felt like a flying brick. I yelled, “Ow, ow, ow,” and wobbled into the house to get some ice.

After looking up concussion symptoms on the web and seeing that I was going to be OK, I took it easy the rest of the night. But the next morning, when I looked in the mirror my jaw hung open: I had two black eyes. I worked from home the entire week. On May 22, I took the skills test for my Certified Nursing Assistant with two black eyes. The rater, who was a nurse, raised her eyebrows and said, “Your dog did that?”

I can’t ignore the looks I’ve been getting for the last three weeks. I wonder how many people think I am in a domestically abusive relationship. Part of me feels like a movie star, skulking around my small town in sunglasses all the time. Even today, I have two thin marks left, two purple reminders of Gus’s faux pas.

Boy, am I glad June has arrived. May, you can kiss my *ss.


7 thoughts on “May Was the Cruellest Month (So Far)

  1. I am so sorry for the loss in your life. Life has a great way of dealing some pretty crappy hands. I’m curious what was your husbands liver disease? I have Wilson’s and I had a liver transplant 16 years ago. I’ve not had the greatest of luck either. Transplant at 15, married and divorced in 2006 (he was a real jerk and cheated), meningitis at 24 (2008), knee surgery at 27 and back surgery at 31 (8 days ago). I’ve lost two high school friends drunk driver and suicide. Lost an uncle to a shot gun. An aunt and an uncle to “unknown” deaths, my grandmother was diagnosed and died from uterine cancer in 4 months, life is tough. As much as you probably cursed out Gus he loves you unconditionally, animals are like that. He will always be there when your sad to cheer you up, and hopefully not give you any more black eyes. I’ve had a few fat lips from my boxer and I’m bruised everywhere from him climbing all over me. Now that it shorts weather I must look like a domestic abuse victim too. Keep your chin up, everyone has their own struggles but you never have to deal with them alone.


    1. Hi. Yes, my husband did have Wilson’s Disease. He received two liver transplants in a week’s time, but he ended up
      dying from a lung infection. It was rough. His family was a bunch of hill billies, too, who didn’t like my “New York”
      mouth and feminist ideals. So, we have not spoken really since his death. He and I have a beautiful 18 year old daughter,
      though, and she looks a lot like him.
      You sure have had your share of grief as well. Thank you so much for sharing. Gus did not mean to break my nose, of course,
      and he is the cutest dog! I love him… Writing is how I keep my chin up. Without it, what would I do. ???
      Best wishes and hugs to you, new friend.


      1. Wow, there are not too many people I know that have or had Wilson’s disease, I was orange in matter of hours and life flighted to Boston children’s. I’ve been fortunate to have had my transplant last this long. Has your daughter been tested? It is an easy disease to diagnose if you know what you are looking for but its not a common disease so most Drs have only read about it in med school. I’m happy to hear you have a piece of him in your daughter and he will always be with you in spirit. I went to a psychic last week- I will tell you that shut is REAL. She knew things I’ve never told anyone. My mother was the only person I told about the ring I sewed into a quilt my grandmother got a week before she died and was creamated with it. She KNEW! So he’s with you, and must have gotten a giggle out of the run in with Gus. But it sure is a small world knowing some other random person out of the blue had wilsons


      2. Yes. We had my daughter tested while my husband was still alive. She only carries the gene. None of the doctors knew about Wilson’s then either. I had to explain it every time we ended up in the E/R, which was often, since Harly never followed the diet until it was too late. It’s a double recessive gene, so his mother and father both passed it on–his brother had it too, but he died in a drunk driving accident. It was all too much for him. When my daughter decides to have kids, she will have to have her husband tested. Only 1 in 30,000 people have Wilson’s. Did you know that?


      3. I did know that. It’s not a common disease and it’s probably just as unlikely to meet someone out of the blue that has or knows about it. I’m glad your daughter was tested. My husband will need to be tested, but yes, both of my parents were carriers and I was the super lucky one to get it. My problem was there was no family history of it, that we knew if so it was far too late to be proactive. I was skipped to the tippy top of the UNOs list of over 11,000 people waiting for a liver. My birthday is 11/11, I waited 11 days and had my transplant on December 11th. Oh and k is the 11th letter in the alphabet – I would have to say that 11 might be my lucky number.
        I am so sorry for the unimaginable losses you have been through over the years and sincerely hope that you are able to find true happiness in your life.


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