After The Funeral

After the funeral I crawled into his side of the bed, unearthed his clothes from the cupboards, buried my nose in mountains of fabric, but his scent, like him, was gone. I had unplugged the phone, hidden my laptop under a mountain of trash. People kept finding new ways to tell me that they were sorry – in hushed whispers, condolences messages, assurances that he was a good man, the best man. I never knew what to say in response.

See the thing about finding The One is that there’s always a chance you will have to spend part of your life without them. I just didn’t expect to do it so soon.

The only thing I ate was soup, sullenly heating up a can on the stove and then spooning it tastelessly down my throat afterward when even the hunger pangs could cut through the numbness. Occasionally there was a loud knocking on the door, and I might hear my mother or my sister calling my name. Sometimes I would let them in, but would regret it almost immediately afterward as they bustled around tidying the apartment, making clucking sounds at me and trying to force me to eat, all while trying to make forced cheery conversation. Their love was deafening, and all I wanted to do was sink down into deep, black, bubbling grief.

The first letter was slipped under my front door. I found it after I stirred awake late one afternoon and stumbled into the living room. I had had a dream about him, and waking up felt like losing him all over again. It was in an unmarked white envelope which I opened without even noticing my hands’ moving. When I unfolded the letter, and finally looked down to read it, I almost dropped it.

Love, it started. I’m so sorry.

It was his handwriting.

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After The Funeral