It’s been hard. His life is almost over now, but mine has been over since he got the diagnosis. I can’t do it anymore. ‘Come on, love,’ I say, ‘let’s get you wrapped up; we’re going for a drive.’
I tighten his scarf, put a blanket over his lap and tuck him in tight. All these little things I do for him that he never remembers. I thought I could cope, and when I couldn’t cope I thought I’d just get used to it. But none of those things have happened. He hasn’t known me for the last two years. Everyday I’m a stranger. It’s not fair on either of us. I wipe a tear from my cheek and cringe at the lines under my fingers. I don’t remember getting them, it’s like one day nothing, and then they were there.
I push his chair into the back of the car and drive to our favourite place. ‘Where are you taking me,’ he says.
‘Nearly there, love.’
We always loved it at the top of this hill. There’s a bench near the edge that looks out to sea. We used to sit here and listen to the waves crashing against the rocks below. He points at the bench as though he’s remembering something, but it will be gone again in a moment. This is where it all started, our first date, our first kiss, where he proposed and where it will end. The wind tries to steal his scarf; I tuck it into his coat. He shivers.
‘Home,’ he says.
‘Not yet, love.’
I push his chair toward the bench but this time I don’t sit, I walk straight past until his chair rests on the brink. I wipe away another tear, ‘I love you,’ I whisper as I push him over the edge.