Adam Lee Sparenblek
I lived in fear that what happened one year ago today could or would happen. Addiction is real. There's so much shame and guilt around it. I hope our generation and future generations change that...a last letter, journal entry, to Adam. The boys & I love & miss you to the end, every day...
I remember seeing you face down and lifeless. And I remember what it did to me, how my knees buckled effortlessly. Kneeling at your side, begging God to bring you back. I knew it was too late. I knew only a miracle could bring you back. It felt like I had just jumped off a cliff, free falling. Sheer terror. Our 5 year old had brought me to you, waiting for me at the back door to get home from work. He was talking in a panic, wanting to take me to you quickly.
I initiated CPR as I screamed for God, sobbing over your lifeless body. I've never given chest compressions before, even after years of being a nurse at the hospital. And there I was, counting compressions on my husband while our son stood at your side. When I let the officers and paramedics inside I collapsed to my knees again. Screaming in prayer. Every time I looked up at the police officer to see if my miracle was granted, pleading with them to work harder to find a pulse, I was stabbed with the unbearable realization again when I would see the officer nod his head, no...no pulse. More minutes would pass and more silence and nods from officers that didn't want to look at me, that didn't know what to say - you weren't coming back. I was removed from the house while they carried you out. The coroner came to see me almost immediately. Already asking questions. They actually do that - they actually make a person answer questions in the same hour after finding their loved one deceased. All along I couldn't even comprehend the last hour, I had just talked to you on the phone 8 hours prior. We just said I love you. I received your text 5 hours before. Is this even real life?? You're really gone?? Just like that. All those who loved you, their lives turned upside down. How does this even happen, how does such a deadly drug exist in our world, and it's actually sought after. In the blink of an eye, one decision to feel a high, took you to your resting place. It didn't have to happen, it just feels so senseless...
For days I didn't go upstairs. Every walk up those stairs is a reminder of your last breath taken. The morning of October 24th is forever etched in my memory. It crippled everything inside me. To see your arms a shade of white and streaks of blue that told me in a split second, my best friend, my partner in life, the father of my children, is gone. When I rolled you over, you were already stiff. Your face was so incredibly swollen and bruised, a dark blue and purple. Was it even you? Was this even real... vomit was all around you, your mouth still full. I screamed for you to move. I screamed for Jesus. I pounded on your chest. No God, NO!! You're not f*cking doing this to me! Don't tell me our son is standing here next to his dead father. His daddy. Give him back. Don't take him. NO GOD, NO.
You didn't come back. God wasn't there. And for a long time, I questioned if He even exists. I bargained. Take me. F*cking TAKE ME. Bring my husband back and f*cking take me God Damnit. Strike me dead, torture me. Put me through the fires of hell, just bring him back. Give him back to the boys. Give him back to his parents. Give him back to his best friend, Mike. Give him back to us.
I was empty and lifeless. I could only hear the sound of my soul screaming until the mother of your first born knelt down in the grass beside me. I'll never forget us holding each other while they put you down into the ground, to your final resting place. "Is this really it?" she said. We became bonded in the sons we share with you, bonded in the tears we mourned together over your loss. Reality. Painful reality.
The days, week & months moving forward I was numb. I was in shock. Just going through motions. I wanted to see you again. I wanted to have a last conversation with you. I wasn't ready to let you go. I toyed with the idea of suicide. I toyed with the idea of making myself overdose in the same spot you did. My mind took me to places and thoughts I didn't know were possible. I wanted answers. I wanted to know...I wanted to know what high is so great to risk your own life. Drinking myself to sleep for the first couple months, I wondered if I too would become an addict. Somehow through those days, I clung to our boys, someone has to be there for them. Someone has to tell them and raise them to know you, to keep your memory alive. And that someone was going to have to be me. Alone. Not how we had planned this babe. It was you & me, raising our little men. We were supposed to watch them grow together.
Oddly enough, we had some deep conversations that week. We had reconciled and were living happily as a family again. Our ups and downs the past year had tested us, questioned our commitment to one another. It had me thinking, I wanted validation that our great week was going to last. We were in the kitchen hugging, and I looked at you, "Promise me, promise me we will be together forever? In this life and in the next? Promise me wherever we go after this life, that we won't stop until we find each other?" "I promise you." If I can thank God for anything, it's for that week. It's for that moment. It's for our last dinner as a family that Thursday night. It's for hearing boo say the prayer that night at the dinner table. It's for the spider that was in the hallway that made me scream and us all laugh when I made you get it because mommy doesn't do spiders. God, do I miss you beeb.
The countless days, nights & car rides home I have cried over the loss of you. Mostly for our boys. All three of them. The life they will lead without you by their side. Their sporting events and games. Their first prom. Their first time driving a car. Their graduation from high school, from college. Their wedding day. Making you a grandpa. The future grandchildren you'll have that won't get to know you. Won't get to be spoiled by you. Laugh with you. I just can not.
I cry for myself. For what could have been. For not being able to call you every night after work, to ask how you and the boys are and our plans for dinner. For what was in our greatest moments and memories. Watching the boys do amazing things together - smiling at each other knowing what we created. Amazing sons. For songs we sang to one another, for inside jokes only we knew about, for late night conversations confiding in one another. For our marriage - our bond - that continued to draw us to one another through our ups and downs, as we had many.
For your best friend, Mike. For your brothers, for your sister. For seeing grown men cry. For your parents, heartbroken with tears streaming down their faces over the loss of their first born. For watching your siblings carry you in a casket...some of them still in their 20s. For having to embrace the man that stood by your side at our wedding and tell him you're gone. The both of you spoke 5 different times that Friday...making plans for the four of us to all go out Saturday night. Amanda, Mike & I have been left to grieve the date night that never happened. The laughs and fun we would have had but didn't. The two of them have been the most loyal friends to you - even in death. They have been here for the boys & I and have not fallen short of honoring you the best way anyone could - through their love and care of your boys.
You are missed. You are loved. You are thought of daily, hourly. You took a part of me with you. And you've gifted me w the very best parts of you - your heart continues to beat in the boys you've blessed Jayme & I with. Thank you, beeb. Thank you for our boys, our memories, and for our journey - I'm grateful you chose to spend and share your love & life with me. I look forward to the day I see you again. Until then, rest in peace my love, know that you are forgiven & know that you are my sunshine, my only sunshine...tap 6 times.
Written by Adam wife - Sherry Sparenblek
Below is the last picture of Adam...
a selfie he sent me less than 24 hours before he passed
Addiction is real. It's not a choice it's a disease. They choose to use in the beginning, yes, but after that it becomes an illness. A disease. No one would choose to overdose, be revived, and overdose again the next day. If anything that goes to show how strong of a hold heroin has on people. The chemical changes in the brain that happen and become permanent.
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