Once a week over the past three months, she had slowly made the walk around the block. When tiring, which was often, she would pause to rest and gaze through the slats in the fence, the ache in her aging muscles hardly matching the one in her heart. The walk was becoming more than just a custom, it was all that made the rest of her week bearable. It was, she imagined, a prelude to the first official visit: one which she dreaded yet one for which she also craved.
He hadn’t been gone long and more often than not, she felt that he wasn’t gone at all. His presence had been woven into her living for so many years that in his passing, she found it impossible to comprehend his absence.
In their youth, they had discovered each other. First schoolmates, then friends, then lovers, then a magic that began to weave their souls together so intricately, it was often hard for others to see where one began and the other ended. The cloth of their life had become a collage of deep color: vibrant with laughter at times, muted in tribulation at others. That was how life was, yet together their fabric had sheltered them through many a storm. How does one survive when the color pales, then begins to dissolve, until it’s once existence is called into question? The unraveling of threads that one thought permanently knotted tightly, does it all become a charade? These questions and many others played on her mind and she knew that soon it would be time to face the answers.
She could see his headstone from the fence. The flowers left there had wilted and the brown leaves were scattered at the foot of the vase. She longed to go and sit at that stone, but crossing the threshold onto the other side of the fence would be the first steps into acceptance of reality and she was unsure if she was ready for that.
Perhaps another trip around the block would bring things more into focus for her. She turned and started to make the trek again. Slowly she stepped, a wisp of breeze brushed against her and faintly in the background she could hear him calling her name, whispering for her to come and visit: perhaps bring some comfort for them both.