Dear Walt,

I’ve been going to bed earlier and earlier. Sometimes I have to force myself to stay up till 8:30. And I’ve been staying in bed later and later. One morning I had to force myself to get up at 10:45. The first week after December 21st happened, I didn’t sleep much at all. Now I do. A lot, actually. And it’s my favorite time and place because then I don’t have to face the emptiness.

I haven’t dreamed about you yet though I did dream that Mr. Darcy was helping me choose a bathroom and that made perfect sense after watching P&P and talking with our son in law about finishing off the master bath. I don’t know what I want to do with the house floors. I know what you wanted but it’s a bit more spendy than I’m comfortable with now. What I wanted, you didn’t.

I guess that doesn’t matter, does it? I can do what I want. Whatever.

Right now I’m tired and can’t think beyond the fact that we were supposed to be doing this together. Our life. Our home. The place we’d fallen in love with after sixteen years of four kids moving out then moving back then out again. They were all on their own at last and it was our turn, our time.

This house was for us. Not for me.

We had our living space downstairs and our work space upstairs. And room for the zoo. Now it’s just a shell, literally and figuratively, because you’re not here to make it worth the effort of rebuilding. And I’m filled with why bother as I wait for the day to finish so I can go to bed.

What I’m having the hardest time with is that you were here… and then you weren’t. You just vanished. We went to bed and I never saw you again. For you, it was the best way. For me… I’m so unsettled. Confused. Lost. I’ll never get the answers to the questions badgering me.

And the answers don’t matter. You’re not here. You’ll never be here again. You’re gone. Except you’re not. You’re in every room, every corner. I see you and hear you and don’t understand where you went. Or why. Or what I’m supposed to do without you. Except sleep.