I just got back tonight from a week-long trip to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. It was a very productive one, having accomplished some important milestones for an ongoing project there and also made a number of new friends along the way. It was “good”. However, tonight while I was waiting to be fetched from airport arrival area, it just suddenly dawned on me that for the first time Mariel wont be there anymore to take me home. For she did this without fail with every travel I made (which was quite often considering my work)
Mariel would sometimes also bring along our daughter Sam for those “special” times. And what a treat it was to be able to see the two most important persons in my life after an expectedly stressful outing. We ordinarily “grabbed a bite” after that at McDonald’s or something just to celebrate our togetherness. I imagined that Mariel looked forward to being with me again even if I ‘d been away only for a couple of days. She’d sometimes go directly from her work just to be there despite her own usually hectic work day. She’d customarily ask me how my trip went and if I had done my best to avoid eating those kinds of food that usually brought me gout. She only knew too well that as a rule I would try to “get away with it” as she would not be around to check on me. I missed those conversations so much now. Although back then I’d sometimes think of them as annoyances. You know how it is, guys. Now I only know better.
I had done my best to hide my tears tonight from the driver who had picked me up from the airport. ( Although I know I was never really good at these things. ) I truly felt so lonely at the airport arrival entrance, having again suddenly realized the great void in my life. Some will call it just “habit”, I call it simply love. For Mariel loved me enough to want to “see” even if it meant taking time away from more important things like Sam, work or catching up on a favorite book, etc., etc. I wish I had been thoughtful enough to have completely appreciated those simple moments at the airport terminal. But like many important moments in life, It’s so easy to take those for granted. I never realized that I was a bloody lucky bastard (pardon my French) to have my Mariel. Now I’m just another bloody lucky bastard crying at the airport wishing he knew then that he was the bloodiest, luckiest bastard on Earth indeed.
I love you Mommy, I’m back. I had brought home “something special” from my trip for you tonight.
4 thoughts on “Mommy, I’m back”
Coming home to an empty house is very hard. Tiredness is hard, too. Putting those things together is rocky indeed.
You say you did not appreciate your arrivals at the airport and homecomings enough before, but from the way you write, I can see that’s just not true. You loved to come home, and Mariel surely knew that, because she made the effort to be there.
It’s a long process of adjustment, living without that spark beside you, and it’s made up of so many little things like this one. How many are the ways.
That emptiness will never be filled exactly, but you will find joy again through new people and new routines. That’s how you carry on. You will find joy again one day – it’s already out there, just waiting to be found, if you can bear to find the courage to look.
Some things just will never be the same without Mariel. Next time I wish Sam could at least be there to see me home though. It’s tough during these times, I’ll just try to draw from a lifetime’s worth of beautiful memories with her. I guess Robert looking inside might be a good place to start. Spirits up to you always.
I can just “feel” from your writing what it felt like. Roads is right – the emptiness never quite goes – but you do become more able to accept ii and live with it. Hugs.
Yes Jan, you would even think that things were getting a little better when something hits you and you are made to realize that the person who made your life complete is no longer there. I hope that one day I can learn to live with that emptiness. To paraphrase Roads, learning to limp along through life.
Take care and thank you for visiting again.