Dear Cain

November 19, 2009

Dear Cain,
I’ve been awake for a long time staring at a spot on the ceiling where a tiny light from my computer is creating a crescent glow. I woke up several times throughout the night each time thinking of you. I remember when your coughing was getting bad and kept waking us so many times throughout the night. I remember accepting the tiny amounts of sleep that I got, with a bittersweet knowledge that someday in the future I would once again sleep through the night. This is not yet the case as I still wake every couple of hours, only now I wake to still and quiet. Is this your way of visiting me? If so, I’m happy you are no longer coughing.

A Stop By Your Favorite Tree

A Stop By Your Favorite Tree

I took a walk with Bear and Sadie yesterday. Funny, Bear still got excited at those same spots you always did, looking at Sadie for the same reactions and seeming confused when Sadie just soldiered on without a passing glance or response. There were no breaks in our walk for frenzied commotion, so I took your place for a moment as we passed by the big yellow house where the white dog used to tease from behind the fence. I made a lot of noise and Bear danced around, but our effect was not the same, as he just stayed on his porch seeming not care. We gave it a try for you and it was fun.

I fed the horses alone this morning and watched as the sunrise painted the snow covered mountains a brilliant shade of coral pink. As I cleaned along the fence, the neighbors’ dogs, Emma and Tank, came running to bark at me as they always do, but this morning they grew tired of me quickly and walked away when I told them they don’t bother me anymore. Emma then ran off to bark at something on the trail, but as I looked there was nothing there. Did you come to my rescue? I like to think so.

Bear still searches for extra crumbs of food near your bowl after each meal, I guess old habits are hard to break and I’ve used far less paper towel in the past week. Your water bottle that has sat empty on the counter now serves a new purpose reminding me further of you. Wherever you are, I hope water and the simple act of getting a drink comes easier.

I think of each moment that made up the last week. I’ve cried and I’ve laughed and I’ve been happy and sad. The roller coaster continues and I imagine it will for some time. I’ve been told that it does get easier with time and I trust that it will, but for now I just wrestle with “it”. Life has been moving in slow motion, unlike my time with you and I’m reminded of a thought I had one week ago when I wished time would just stand still. As I get ready to end this letter, a phone call comes at almost precisely the same time I let you go. I sit down in the sunshine and a chime softly sings.

You are still here when I get up, and you are still here when I go to bed. You are with me all day long. And though I no longer see your watchful eye following my every move, I like to think that from somewhere else you are.