Letter # 11

Dear M,

Letter # 10 is somewhere, saved as a draft, but I can’t find it right now, so I’ll start fresh. Cha has a cold. He has been sneezing for days, but seems to be eating and drinking well. I went to work today. Rose came to get the boys for an outing. Tomorrow they are going rock climbing with Miles at an indoor climbing gym. 

Things that are hard right now: leaving for work, coming home from work, opening mail and sleeping. Leaving for work is hard because it is Christmas break and I can’t spend it with the boys because I haven’t accrued enough leave since you died. It taps into my working mother guilt as well. Coming home from work is hard because you aren’t here. You always felt like home to me. Now our house doesn’t feel like home. It just feels like a to do list. The mail, lots of it is addressed to you. We got Christmas cards from people who don’t know that you are dead. Sleeping is hard because I can’t hear you breathing. I tried our nifty sharper image noisemaker with 25 different sounds. Last night I tried city which reminded me of our apartment in Tbilisi. We lived right next to a car wash. Tbilisi was a night time place, decidedly not a morning place. People took their cars to the car wash at 10 or 11 pm. So many nights I would briefly wake and ask,” Is it raining?” You patiently replied, “It’s the car wash, remember? We live next to a car wash.” I had high hopes for that overseas posting. It seemed like it was made for you. It all went South with the Georgian/Russian war. I was getting ready to take art classes. The kids were a few weeks from starting class at the international school. I felt strangely secure about our little plans which were as sturdy as a wet Kleenex. 

Tonight for my first hour at home there was the tacchycardia. This time I noticed it which is halfway to controlling it. I noticed the feelings, the emptiness of the house.  The boys were at Miles house. When they came home we watched the first episode of “This is Us.” You would have loved this show. I binge watched the whole first season on Friday and Saturday. Now I am watching it again with the boys. They love it too. The father’s optimism and playfulness remind me sometimes of you. It’s real life, real emotions, real joy, real pain. 

Tonight I am trying to decide between “Surf’s Up” and “rain.” I think I will start with surf’s up. It has a nice rhythm almost like an inhale and an exhale. I hope you had a good Christmas. I picture you with your cousin’s Charles, Roy and Jap, talking up a storm.