Like a freight train, time is bullying its way forward. Come February, which feels just around the corner, I will have been five years without Mike. I sit here in his chair on the lanai we shared in this house, looking down on the ocean view he loved so dearly, wondering how that is possible.
Because in this moment, and so many others, it feels like yesterday. The pain feels raw and real and the missing him hasn’t stopped. And yet I have been forced to continue to deal with life in this world all this time, without him.
I'm sitting in my new apartment while I type this. Soon, I'll have to go get ready to leave. Today I have to drive back to the house and work on clearing what I want out of the place before I can have an estate sale. I don't want to leave my new place, and this surprises me. I've lived here a week and already it feels like home. It's amazing how adaptable we humans are.
That's not to say that I don't still feel a bit lost here. I think there's actually a bit of shock, too. I feel an "out of body" sensation quite often. As though I'm seeing myself from outside of myself and I just shake my head in surprise. Wasn't I married, living in the country and teaching only 9 months ago?
But I'm here now. This is my home for the at least the next 6 months. I'm meeting people and the cats are settling in nicely. And to be honest, wherever they are feels like home, anyway. I'm sleeping through the night, something that has always been a gauge of my emotional state. It's easier to go to the grocery store because there's less danger of running into dangerous memory traps.
I don't think longingly of that house itself all the time, like I worried I might.