Tonight I am missing you- not my husband, lover, friend- but my family.  You were my family.

It's amazing how someone you didn't know for a major chunk of your life becomes your family.  Someone so different from you- even a different race like Dan and I- and yet- people were always telling us we had started to look alike.  You were my family.

It was my first full day alone with Audrey today.  I pushed through the afternoon letting her watch a 30 minute video and have a snack on my bed.  I gave her new the "window crayons" I'd picked up at Duane Reade this morning so she could color on the windows.   That lasted about 10 minutes.  And mostly it was me drawing.  We ate dinner, I bathed her, and then the night dragged on.  She usually falls asleep by 8:30 pm, but tonight it was closer to ten.  She cried and cried to be tucked in again and again, and just wanted me to sit in her room until she fell asleep.  We definitely talked about you a lot today, so I wondered if that had anything to do with it.  I left her room a few times, only to listen to her screaming on the monitor.  I always find I'm holding my breath while she does that.  So, eventually I go back in.

I tried to tell myself tonight as I was getting a load of laundry out of the dryer, that this was similar to when you were away touring for a month.  That I had an end in sight then- and could push through- and that now, my end is just much further away- but still there.  I'll still be reunited with you.

Eventually, after a glass of milk, Audrey agreed to go to sleep peacefully.  I came into my room, exhausted- realizing again that this is my life- and my life alone now- that you're not coming back any time soon to help out or be my support like you always have been, and that, no- this is nothing like when you were traveling.  It's completely different.