He leaves on Saturday. It’s Tuesday now, and I am sad. Just really, really sad. And I’m tired. I’m constantly second guessing whether I am using each minute of the day in the best possible way.
I worry that if I don’t make a special effort this week, I will regret it after he leaves. I worry if I do make a special effort that it will seem artificial.
I keep saying to myself over and over and over: it is only nine months. I can handle that. And, honestly, I’m really pretty sure I can. I just can’t handle this week.
I feel lonely for him at night, even though he’s right there sleeping beside me.
I am stuck in the pointless torture of pre-missing him, of choking up at every little thing. I choke up seeing him sitting with the girls--all three--at church, seeing how deftly he manages them, sneaking waves or eyebrow raises across the altar to where I sit with the choir.
I choke up when he bends down to pat the dogs, muttering “you’re a good dog” second naturedly.
I choke up when the kids--all three--run to greet him and hug him at the door when he gets home at night, ready for baths and stories. They pile onto his lap--all three--and wiggle and giggle and jockey around.
I sob outright when they clamber into bed with us in the wee, small hours to get extra snuggles in.
The big kids talk about him going away, casually, at breakfast, doing the mental math to figure out how old everyone will be when he gets back. I ache inside because of what they clearly understand about it, and because of what they clearly do not.
I really love our life, you know I do. But this is the hard part. It is the very hardest thing we do. Harder than all the moves, harder than the workplace politics, harder than the many, many late nights.
It’s just plain hard.