Don't Forget, I Love You

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Time: A cold and windy day in November 2008.
Setting: Riley and Ryan River’s house. Riley is in the bathroom with a pregnancy test laying on the cabinet; the pink pregnancy test box lies in the sliver trashcan beside the granite cabinet. Riley looks into the transparent mirror and notices her expression of excitement and fear. Her short brown hair is tangled in knots, and her baby-soft hands are shaking. Riley picks at her blue fingernails as she waits for her husband. There is an empty room beside the bathroom, which will soon be made into a nursery for the new baby, if he or she lives. Right now the empty room is nothing but boring paint and boring walls with a couple of boxes here and there, but Riley has high hopes for this room and has always dreamed of making it a nursery. Ryan is in the cold garage pulling in his new black Honda Civic. The radio in his car is playing a sad love song quietly. Ryan remains in his warm car hidden from the cold wind that will greet him as soon as he steps out of his car and from his wife whom he fears telling his bad news too.
Background Information: Riley and Ryan were high school sweethearts and have now been happily married for two years. Riley has short brown hair and eyes like crystals; Ryan has brown hair and the deepest blue eyes Riley has ever seen. Ryan has been at the doctor all-day and just found out that he has cancer in his spine, brain, and lungs; he is guaranteed to die. Riley and Ryan have been trying to start a family, but after two miscarriages, they had slightly given up. However, while Ryan was at the doctor, Riley found out she was pregnant. On the other hand, Ryan has just gotten home from the doctor and is bracing himself to tell Riley about the cancer.


Ryan: (Ryan pulls his car into the garage). How am I going to tell her? How can I leave her? What is she going to say? She is the love of my life, my best friend, and my true love. (He takes a deep breath and walks in the door. He is immediately hugged by his wife who embraces him in her arms. He suddenly realizes he will not get these sweet hugs much longer. Ryan begins to cry, puzzling his wife).

(Ryan takes Riley into the family room and they sit down on the leather couch). Baby, I have some bad news, babe…babe…(Tears now stream down his face)…I have cancer. (Ryan hugs his wife). Baby I know I just found out. They said I have three weeks left, because it’s in my brain, my spine, and in my lungs. I don’t know where it came from all of a sudden. I mean I haven’t really felt that different. (Ryan looks into his wife’s crystal blue eyes that are now gushing water out like a river. He hates seeing her cry, especially when he makes her). Come on Ryan stay strong for your wife. She needs you. I know you are the one with the cancer, but look at her, she is miserable and heart broken. You have been her best friend for ten years, what is she going to do when you are gone?

(Ryan looks at Riley’s necklace that he gave her for Christmas when they were in the tenth grade. The necklace is a heart, half diamonds and half silver. Ryan still remembers the exact look on her face and the happiness in her eyes when he gave it to her. He thought she was the cutest thing and he felt like this didn’t show his love for her enough. However, Riley loved it and let out a scream as she slowly creaked opened up the box the sparkling necklace was in. Ryan looks at the diamonds on the necklace that have faded over the years, but that has never stopped Riley from wearing it everyday). I never thought she would wear this necklace everyday when I bought it, I thought it was just a thing she would wear for a month or two. But it has been ten years since then and she is still wearing it. She is amazing. Lord, I am going to miss her so much. (Ryan’s blue eyes become misty as tears fall down his newly shaved face, one by one.).

(Ryan kisses Riley on her forehead). Ri, when I leave I want you to marry someone else. I know it will never be the same but please try. I know, I know. I love you too and I could never love someone else the way I love you either. But baby you deserve to be with someone who will take care of you. I don’t want you to be by yourself for the rest of your life. (Shocked). What do you mean you won’t be by yourself? You’re what? Pregnant? Honey that’s great! Our prayers will surely be answered this time. Now you will have someone with you. (Ryan drifts off into thoughts inside his head as he listens to Riley cry). She is pregnant? I think I am happy for her, I mean I always wanted a child, and we have tried so hard to have one, but now I won’t get to be part of their life. I won’t get to watch her go on her first date and scare the boy that asks her out. I won’t get to teach him how to play football, basketball, and baseball. I won’t get to watch them grow up and become successful. But what if she has another miscarriage? She will be devastated. Oh God, please let Riley have this baby and let it survive, she needs this baby. (Begins to cry). It is so different when it’s your own child being born. I mean I have ten brothers and sisters but this, this is so different, this is a human being that I helped create. I am not just related to it, I created it. And now, now I will never be able to see them, not even on the monitor when Ri goes in for her first ultra sound.

(Ryan grabs his wife’s soft, smooth hands and holds them tight). Ri, please let this baby know who I was. Please let them meet everyone in the family, maybe Jenna can act like a big sister to her cause she is the youngest of the bunch. (Both let out a short, quiet chuckle). Honey I’m sorry. I am going to miss you so much. But baby, I will always be with you. I will always be with the necklace you wear everyday. Baby, whenever you’re feeling sad, just close your eyes and kiss this necklace and I will be there. Whenever you watch a football game, think of me and how I was obsessed with football, and how you came to every single one of my games. Every single one; you never missed a game, no matter what the weather was. Honey, when you are feeling lonely, just remember the times we have had together and the laughs we have shared. Remember the time we went ice-skating and you were horrible? Baby you could barely move. But I wasn’t ever going to let go of you. Ri, you were the cutest thing. (Ryan smiles at the love of his life). Honey, when you are feeling defeated, just think of everyone who thought that we would never make it together; that we would never make it a month. We sure proved them wrong. (Ryan shows a proud smile through his tears). Babe, when your belly gets big and you can’t see your feet, just think of me and laugh, because you know I will still think you are beautiful, even if you do look like a pumpkin. (Ryan smiles at his wife). And Ri, when you look into our baby’s eyes, think of my deep blue eyes that you say you get lost in. You always said you hope our kids have my eyes. (Ryan kisses Riley’s hands). Baby I know you are sad and I know this is hard for you but I will always be around. Ri I will be here wherever you are and wherever you look. I will be in the wind singing you goodnight, I will be laying on a cloud in the sky when you are playing with our baby outside, I will be laughing by your side when you ruin a new recipe, and I will be here with you every step of the way as you raise our child. When it rains outside, don’t be afraid to dance, and if it snows, go out and make a snow angel. When the leaves fall, go make a pile and jump in them, and when there is a thunderstorm stay up late and watch it. Riley go on and live your life to the fullest, don’t hang on to the past. I want you to move on and have fun; I will be right by your side every minute of every day. Honey, let’s make these three weeks something to remember; let's live like we have never lived before. These our are last moments together and honey, don’t forget, I love you.





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This article has 5 comments. Post your own now!

Basketball23 said...
Dec. 7, 2010 at 3:04 pm
Wow.  This is a true love story and if I was the wife in that situation I would be madly in love with my husband.  I love your work!!!!
 
MacSchiff replied...
Dec. 16, 2010 at 8:38 pm
thank you so much! 
 
peregrinefalcon This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Nov. 19, 2010 at 11:44 am
awwwww...they are so cute! This is such a sweet story. I love your style. beautiful!
 
MacSchiff replied...
Dec. 6, 2010 at 8:47 pm

Awe!  Thank you so much!  It means a lot(:

Have a great day/night

 
Starrlyt replied...
Mar. 21, 2011 at 1:09 pm
wow. u are a truly amazing author/poet. I absolutely love your work!!!
 
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