I stood in the living room today, listing to Feel First Life from the ASIP compilation posted a few days ago with no idea what to do with myself, where to go from here, what to do. Listless. A ghost. Today is really bad.

The last few days had more moments of clarity than not. I thought I had a scaffolding in place that could become the exoskeleton of whatever will be built in this crater, but that came crashing down, spectacularly, as a failed first attempt. And that’s cool. I have a lot of those to build and re-build and build again.

I’m having trouble seeing right now, seeing things for what they are, and I know that’s part of the grief process. I’m erratic. Overcompensating. I don’t want to let that small flicker of hope that has taken root behind my sternum fade and die out. I don’t. I want to hold on to it, to cherish it, to think that maybe something I’ll do during this rebuilding process will be enough to spark the warmth of a new hearth, but I know that’s grief talking. I know that’s grief whispering not to let it go. And I want grief here. I want something to tell me to hold on, that if I let go, it’ll be the biggest mistake of my life. I don’t want to let go. I don’t.

I have more work to do, work that won’t be easy, because nothing about us has ever been conventional, and this will be no exception. There will be people who will think me a fool. Maybe I am. I don’t know. But this is bigger than me, bigger than her, and that bigness is 12 and in the other room waiting for me to tell her it’s time to play Bendy and the Ink Machine, Chapter 3. I had to stop in the middle last night. I didn’t have it in me. I don’t have it now, either, but I’ll make it or I’ll find it and I’ll let her help me. She won’t know that’s what she’s doing, but I’ll appreciate it.

I am so lost.

She gave me a painting today for my birthday, a painting that I really loved from one of the artists in her show. It was a beautiful, thoughtful gift. And I can’t stop crying.


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