Life was getting too hard for Maureen after her wife, Joanne, died.

They had adopted three children, and one of them was in college. It was really hard for Maureen to take care of them because they never respected her like they respected Joanne. They always listened to Joanne and did everything she told them to do in an instant, but it was the complete opposite with Maureen.

Then, Maureen had to work, and pay the bills by herself. They were living just above water, with just enough food for everyone to eat, except for Maureen, who barely ate anymore.

After Joanne died in a bus accident when she was heading to work, Maureen was harassed by some drunk guy on the street who slammed her against a wall and kept on calling her a "fat bitch".

Being that that event occurred maybe a few days after Joanne's passing, Maureen was extremely sensitive at the time, so she thought she was fat, and it didn't help that Joanne wasn't there to tell her she was beautiful everyday.

So Maureen stopped eating, not entirely, but she only ate once a week.

Not eating was just one of the ways Maureen tortured herself.

Maureen was also cutting her wrist. Every other day, she locked herself in her bathroom and cut herself. It had only been since Joanne died that she began doing that, which was about a month ago, so she had about fifteen cuts on her left arm.

The cuts were all right next to her vein, but she knew that with one slip of the razor, she could end her life, so she cut kind of deep but was careful and slow, making it more painful.

One day, the kids were behaving especially bad, and Maureen had a stressful day at work, so she was very tired.

Maureen dragged her feet throughout the house, and nearly got murdered by two people, one female teenager and one male child dashing by her.

" Kids, stop running!" Maureen called, pulling the robe that was once Joanne's closer to her body.

" Anthony took my iPad!" Olivia, who was the oldest daughter yelled.

" Anthony, give it back!" Maureen called.

Suddenly, Anthony and Olivia showed up right in front of Maureen, on the floor, wrestling for the iPad. Maureen sighed, and bended down, taking the iPad out of Anthony's hand.

" Hey, mom!" Olivia whined, standing up.

" If this iPad is going to cause so much chaos, then it stays with me," Maureen said.

" Ugh! You are so annoying!" Olivia yelled with a grunt and stormed up the stairs with her fists clenched.

" You're fat!" Anthony yelled to Maureen, and then ran away.

Maureen shut her eyes in a frustrated way, exhaling through her nose. Tears brimmed in her eyes, but she knew not to let a little six-year-old's words hurt her.

Oh, but it did hurt. It hurt Maureen really badly to be called fat again.

Maureen dashed up the stairs and locked herself in the bathroom. She slid down the door as tears streamed down her cheeks.

After crying for about two minutes, she cleaned her eyes and stood up, looking at herself in the mirror. She pulled her shirt up, and despite the fact that you could see her rib cage, she still felt fat.

Maureen grabbed the razor from in the shower and held it next to her vein. She couldn't handle this anymore. She shut her eyes and braced herself, about to cut through her vein, when she heard a familiar voice that was like music to her ears.

" Honeybear," the voice said.

Maureen's breath hitched in her throat, and she turned around, any unhappy feelings disappearing at the sight of the love of her life.

Maureen dropped the razor and practically jumped onto Joanne, who had a beautiful, thin strap, white dress on with floral patterns. Maureen flung her arms around Joanne's neck and hugged her tight, burying her face in her neck and breathing in her lavender scent.

Joanne wrapped her arms around Maureen's slim waist, noticing she was a lot skinnier.

Maureen pulled away, and stared Joanne in the eyes, cupping both of her cheeks before kissing her with passion.

Joanne of course kissed back with just as much passion, tangling her fingers in her wife's hair.

Maureen pulled away again. " H-how are you here?"

" I got permission to give you a visit," Joanne said with a smile that melted Maureen's heart.

Maureen smiled in return. " Permission from who?"

" The day that you pass, you'll find out," Joanne said, and then picked up the razor, that somehow disappeared. " And that day won't be today."

Maureen clenched her jaw.

" Maureen, killing yourself? Honeybear, how could you even think of that?" Joanne asked carefully.

Maureen brushed away the tears that brimmed in her eyes. " I know, I know, I just… this is so hard, Joanne. You were always the responsible one, but I never thought you'd be gone so quickly."

Joanne pulled Maureen closer. " I know, honey. But you have to stay strong. If not for our kids, then for me."

Maureen sniffled, and Joanne lifted up her wrist. " And this," Joanne said, signaling towards Maureen cuts. " Needs to stop."

Maureen looked away from Joanne, ashamed, and Joanne grabbed her chin and turned her head towards her. " Honey, I'm serious. You have a wonderful life, that should come to an end when God decides, not when you want to… die."

Maureen sighed.

" So… are you gonna stop?" Joanne asked, and Maureen looked her in the eye, and nodded.

" Yes," Maureen said.

Joanne smiled. " Oh and honey, please eat."

" I do eat," Maureen defended herself.

Joanne raised her eyebrows at Maureen, and lifted up her shirt. " Baby, I can see your rib cage."

Maureen sighed again. " I just… feel so… fat."

" Honeybear, you are not fat! You have a beautiful body, and for what it's worth; you have the most beautiful body I've ever seen."

" You're just saying that because I'm your wife. You have to think I'm beautiful."

" No, baby, the fact that you're my wife doesn't have to make me think you're beautiful. I just… know you are."

Maureen batted her eyelashes. " You really think?"

" Yes!" Joanne said.

Maureen smirked. " Okay, I guess eating isn't too bad."

" It's not, and you love food," Joanne said.

Maureen smiled. " I do."

Joanne smiled, and leaned in, pressing her forehead against Maureen's and breathing in.

" I missed you, Pookie," Maureen said.

" I missed you too, honeybear," Joanne said.

There was comfortable silence as they held each other. Joanne turned Maureen around so she was hugging her from behind and they were looking at each other through the mirror. " Baby, if you ever feel sad or mad, and want to hurt yourself, come to my grave stone and talk to me."

Maureen looked at her weirdly. " That's crazy, I'll look crazy."

" No you won't, lots of people do it, and I'll be listening."

" You will?" Maureen asked.

" Yeah. Tell me everything, like you used to. And I'll listen. I'll send you a sign."

Maureen smiled, and leaned back into Joanne's touch, holding her arms. " You have to leave now, I'm assuming."

" Sadly," Joanne said, and kissed Maureen's shoulder. " Yes. But, I don't know, maybe I'll come back one day, or maybe we'll see each other when you pass… but either way, stay good, so that we can be together again."

Maureen nodded. " I will. For you."

Joanne squeezed Maureen a little tighter in a hug." I love you," Joanne whispered in Maureen's ear, and kissed her cheek softly.

" I love you too," Maureen said, and shut her eyes in content, and then opened them, seeing in the mirror that Joanne wasn't with her anymore.

: :

A week later, Maureen had bad day at work, so she listened to Joanne and visited her gravestone. She told Joanne everything, and even though she couldn't see Joanne, she felt her there, and she felt better after letting her emotions out because she knew Joanne was listening.

And then just as Maureen got up, the wind blew most suddenly, and the trees shook over so slightly.

Maureen smiled, not being entirely sure that it was Joanne, but deep down, she knew it was, because she felt the butterflies in her stomach develop and a familiar warmth that Joanne always gave her when she was near shoot through her body.

Maureen blew a kiss to the gravestone, feeling a little crazy, but not feeling that at all when the wind blew harshly again, nearly knocking Maureen over. Maureen giggled. " Okay, okay… I love you, Joanne."

Maureen suddenly felt a pair of arms around her, and someone kissed her cheek. Maureen turned her head and saw a faded white image of Joanne. She smiled, and disappeared.

And Maureen walked home, happy as can be.

: :

And of course, even though Maureen would miss her Pookie, she knew now that Joanne would always be with her even if she wasn't actually with her. And even though Joanne was physically dead, her soul wasn't, and neither was their love: it was undying.