I think the greatest struggle I’ve had these past few years has been in learning that I can be happy without you. It’s no insult, for surely I was happy before we were together, but your presence filled me with a happiness I had never truly known, and one on which I have come to rely. And now, each mile, each hour, each pen-stroke I make without you exponentially increases my longing – so much so that each passing day can come to feel no different than the last. I get drawn into an in-between world where there is only past – no present or future.
Only recently do I feel I’ve overcome this. It hasn’t come from letting you go – God knows that each passing second I fill with thoughts of us together again. But it has come in finding the same grace of your touch, your smile, your heart, in the little things that fill my days without you.
I wander into bookstores a lot – our cathedrals. I see a book we’ve both read, or an author you love and I smile. I see a couple holding hands, gazing at the seemingly endless towers of secondhand books and I feel your hand in mine. There are few things on this earth like your hands – small and precious and beautiful, yet the torrent of spirit that spills from them daily leaves me paralyzed by joy.
When I leave the bookstore and can’t help but wonder if I’m actually walking into a world that you’ve created – that your hands have created. The oils of your fingertips made the watercolors of this city by the bay. Your eyes crafted the fertile soil and the redwoods. Even the sunset here is your recycled garment, and as it fades across the Pacific I can see you waking on the other side of the world, wrapping it around your frame.
I walk home, and only now does the vastness of your love truly strike me – there’s no need to be happy without you.
In this world you’ve crafted, there is no “without you.”