The sun’s rays peeped through my bedroom window. I stretched and limped into the kitchen for a cup of coffee. The normal routine is comforting. I don’t strain to hear him say “get up sleepy head” or any of the morning jokes.
I start the morning chores without crying into his shirts and pants. I have already given away most of his clothes, although I do wear his Pendleton shirts. They feel like a hug from him. Still I am a little apprehensive about the door, where I put a lot of his things. It opens sometimes by itself. Inside his his tools, his grave flag, and some of his coats. He was into Emergency preparedness. Soon I will go through his go-bag, but not yet.
I start a grocery list for me. I am still trying to figure out ways to make food for only one person. After his death, I couldn’t even look at food. It meant that we would sit down for dinner and talk. Afterwards we would watch the news and I would lean against him with his arm around me. Yes, when we fed each other, it meant more than when we said, “I love you.” Still live goes on and I must eat.
I don’t get that quick shock when I see his picture anymore. It still hurts that he is gone, but the stabs are not as intense and the heart is not as raw.
Many years ago I learned a truth. If I ignore this grief, it will hurt for far longer. I get these sudden urges to send him a joke to his email address or to tell him the newest outrage. He is gone.
There is a little light though. I am writing. I finally finished a rough draft of a story. Plus I enjoy my walks with my dog. I am not affronted by life. When I get a little stronger, I will take photos again.
He wanted me to be happy and to enjoy my life. Not today. Not tomorrow and maybe not this year. When the memories become sweet again, then I will have stepped fully into the light.