On the First Sadiversary (anniversary of Jesse’s death), my sister and I went to the Subway in Lincoln City, Oregon for lunch. There it was at the soda fountain staring at me…..Cherry Coke. I had successfully managed to avoid CC for an entire year and now it was calling to me on this most auspicious day. My gut told me that yes; I should drink some CC in honor of my Jesse as this was the anniversary of his death. So yes for the first time in a year in indulged and enjoyed a Cherry Coke. You see I have some challenging memories of sharing CC with Jesse during his last days here on earth and even shared some with him on his very last day. So it is painful for me to even think about CC at times. I remember that first time that he asked me for a taste; him wanting to taste something other than the boring, bland ice chips which was all he was allowed. I dipped my finger in the CC and put some on his lips and as he tasted it, his face registered pure joy. I gave him tiny sips of the contraband liquid and he basked in the joy of the flavor. We had shared many a Cherry Coke in wellness, but this was our first in illness as he lost his ability to swallow safely early in the battle. And on his final day, when I told him I was going to the cafeteria to get something for lunch, he mumbled in his weakened voice “Cherry Coke”. I understood what he wanted and we both knew this was to be his last sip of ecstasy that he would ever enjoy. His nurse was none too happy scolding me and telling me that giving him fluids could prolong his death. I told her I was not going to withhold one last little bit of pleasure from my dying husband. I helped him take 3 tiny sips, all his strength would allow him; the last Cherry Coke I shared with my Jesse, 11/9/09.