Patton Oswalt remembered his late wife, crime novelist Michelle McNamara on Facebook one year after she died from a combination of prescription medications and an undiagnosed heart condition.
He wrote about how he felt and said, “It’s awful, but it’s not fatal.”
Oswalt described his day when McNamara died and after describing his morning routine, said, “There was an art show at Alice’s school in the afternoon and my wife and I were going to go, get dragged around the room by Alice as she chattered about her artwork and the work of her classmates. Except instead I came back down into the house and the life i knew was gone.”
He continued and said, “I’m one year into this new life -- one I never even imagined, and I can imagine some pretty pessimistic and dark contingencies, some stomach-freezing ‘what ifs.’ But not this one. This one had such a flat, un-poetic immediacy. The world gazes at you like a hungry but indifferent reptile when you’re widowed.”
Oswalt also added that he took off his wedding ring on Thursday night and put it in a special box for trinkets and souvenirs from his relationship with his wife.
“I couldn’t bear removing it since April 21st, 2016,” he said. “But now it felt obscene. That anonymous poem about the man mourning his dead lover for a year and a day, for craving a kiss from her ‘clay cold lips.’ I was inviting more darkness. Removing the ring was removing the last symbol of denial of who I was now, and what my life is, and what my responsibilities are.”
“So the ring goes with the happy stuff,” he added.
He concluded his post by saying he has made new friends who share his tragedy who are helping him cope and that in turn, he’s become more patient with others.
“Another year starting,” he wrote. “It’s awful, but it’s not fatal. Message received? Over and out.”
Oswalt told Tracy Smith on “48 Hours” that McNamara’s quest to find the “Golden State Killer” took a toll on her health. He said the morning of her death, he laughed because she was snoring -- and then he found her hours later, still in bed, no longer breathing.
“She was dead,” he said. “And I tried reviving her and it was just -- you know. And then everything after that to me is -- it just-- I remember it as, like, screaming, and vomiting, and EMT guys, and friends.”
“I wanna talk to her so badly,” he added. “I miss her so much. And I’m just sad all the time.” Oswalt said it’s important to him to complete and publish McNamara’s book, which is due out in 2018.