Monday, August 30, 2010

A Place at the Table

Still no sedative.

I couldn't rest while Audrey napped, and then she was up again.  We headed downstairs to the lobby to get the mail and sit outside on the bench and blow bubbles for a while.

A friend had dropped by a little package and left it at the front desk.  I opened it as Audrey ate pretzels on the bench next to me.  In a little box was a pretty locket for his photo.  I had just been thinking the other day about getting a locket to wear Dan's photo in."Whatever you need- it will be there.  God will bring it to you," the grief counselor had said at our first session.

I was surprised to find another document from Switzerland in the mail today- so I opened that next- only to find a $3,000 bill for a helicopter rescue/search.  I didn't even know there had been helicopters involved in finding Dan's body.  It is a devastating detail of a death I was so removed from- an ocean away.  I folded it up and blew more bubbles.

Marie, my friend in the building who lost her first husband around my age stopped by to say hi to Audrey and see how I was doing on her way back from the gym.  I told her it was getting harder.  She said she hated to tell me, but it was going to be a long, long time.  "Keep your ring on," she said- for some reason.  I will.  Of course.  She also thought I should consult an attorney about the new bill I'd just received.  For someone so thrifty in life Dan- you sure did die an expensive death.  You would be pissed.  But please don't worry- I know that stuff will work itself out.

While we chatted- another older woman M. knew walked by.  M. leaned in and told me that she had met the love of her life at 49 only to have him die of a heart attack suddenly.  For seven or eight years, this woman set a place for her husband at the dinner table and "ate dinner with him."  "She said am I crazy Marie?" Marie told me.  We both agreed that she is not.  Something must be done to fill the great absence.  Something- anything.

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