Today is my husband's birthday. Unfortunately, he's in SF to attend his best friend's wedding (it sounds like a movie, I know). Which, I keep telling myself, is great. Of course, selfishly, I can't help but wish he was back home.
I guess this is what happens when you've reached a certain level of trust with a person. You begin to get used to the fact that they're always there. Last night, I hardly slept, as I kept tossing and turning at the sudden expanse of bed space I had, feeling dissatisfied that there was no one to fight with over blanket custody. Early morning, I kept imagining I heard strange sounds (bells, footsteps, etc.) which I know aren't really real since I'm usually deaf to these sort of things (with numerous instances of people banging on the door to which I was blissfully unaware of) but without Alex, it seems even the smallest things are intensified and my mind takes care of the rest.
But while it's only a brand of fear laced with loneliness that I have to contend with at night, it's really the emptiness in the mornings punctuated with silence that drives me insane. I will be the first to admit that I'm a spoiled spouse - Alex wakes up earlier than me everyday so that I can have a few more minutes of sleep and then courageously negotiates, bargains, blackmails (entices, begs, entreats, forces) me to consciousness with kisses and hugs and other R rated promises. And while I'm barely capable of thinking, much less speaking in the first few moments after I wake up, he's always smiling and puttering around so that when I do my morning rituals, there's always some sort of sound - TV, Alex humming, Alex talking on the phone etc. For obvious reasons, I had to learn to actually set my own alarm clock on the cell phone, and if you've tried negotiating for an extra 5 minutes with an emotionless (cruel, cruel) device, than you know it's not really as fun. What's worse is that I'm beginning to feel suffocated with the quietness around our apartment. Even when I turn on the TV, it seems as if I'm just deluding myself since I know, I really do know, that he's not there.
This wasn't always the case of course. Once upon a time, I lived all by myself for several years and the lack of sound was something I valued, rather than abhorred. I even remember that in the first few months of my marriage, I had problems with all the noise and the lack of space. Now, I've changed so much that I can barely recall how that felt - that annoyance of being too crowded, of needing a certain level of silence.
And so I wait. Alex will be back next week (yay) and everything will be back to normal (I hope). I just have to survive several sleepless nights and quiet mornings while waiting for his return.