I awake from a bad dream and prefer to go back to it than acknowledge that the other half of the bed is empty.
It feels like it did in the beginning, raw and suffocating. I am steeped in disbelief. I am not here without him, I think. He’s in the kitchen. And when he’s not there, I think he’s stretching in the living room. And when I check and see the floor empty I think, he’s down by the water. I walk down expecting to find his long legs stretched out, his head back, eyes closed, hands intertwined and resting on his chest, dressed in red fleece. And when I don’t see him there, I sink into his chair and sob again.
This is that big wave that my friend spoke about. It comes and shoves me down to the bottom. It tosses me and I don’t know which way is up. If I breathe it is water that I take in.
At 12:10, three hours after I have gone looking for him, I sit on the porch of Blue Hill Books, unwrap my new journal and begin writing. My lungs fill with air that is filled with him.
I'm still breathing.