Chloe’s birthday

Yesterday was Chloe’s 21st birthday, which means she’s now legally old enough to drink. But largely because J and I worked so hard to demystify alcohol and drug use (including letting her have some on several occasions—which is totally legal for parents to do in Texas) it didn’t really feel like a big deal.

But we got to go to Denton to Amy and her boyfriend John’s apartment to celebrate Chloe’s birthday and tried to make it feel as celebratory as possible. Amy and John got us pizza from Mellow Mushroom and some Denton-made local lavender honey ice cream. It was a pretty nice time.

Amy and John rave about how awesome Denton is. And that just got me to thinking…maybe I don’t want to stay where I am now, even though my house feels like a home and is truly pretty spacious.

I talked to Chloe about maybe trying to buy a house in Denton once I get my life insurance check and she has a job. She mentioned that she still wanted to maybe move out of the country at some point but real estate here is a pretty good investment and we would likely be able to sell at a profit.

I don’t think I’ll be moving all that soon. But who knows? It could still be by the end of the year. Or not. I just know it would be nice to be closer to Amy and the town she lives in is actually pretty cool.

I don’t know if this is all a distraction from thinking about the fact that J’s gone. Yesterday was a week since I lost him. Time has changed since then and I can’t explain how. It both feels like it’s been much longer than a week yet also feels like it was just yesterday.

I have a weird relationship with this house now. My landlord still hasn’t responded to me notifying him of J’s death and I’ve now reached out by both text and email. I’m trying hard not to read anything into that.

I’ve still got pretty much all of J’s stuff just where he left it. I can’t bring myself to wash his coffee mug or move his clothes yet. I think it will probably be a long time until I do. Dyl and Chloe asked me if it was intentional that everything is still just where he left it and it is. It’s like a shrine to him until I can set one up for real.

If I had my own house that I owned, I could get as many cats as I wanted. J always said our limit was 4 and two of our cats are just in stubbornly good health despite being so elderly. Whereas if I moved into an apartment, all of them have a 2-cat limit.

Maybe on some level I haven’t accepted that he’s really gone yet. In fact, I’m sure that’s the case. It’s starting to sink in though and it’s overwhelming. I think that will take me quite a while longer. There’s just such a deep emptiness where he used to be.

But I’m starting to think that when I am ready to put away his things, it will probably mean I’ve made some peace with his loss. I’m definitely not there yet. But when I do get there, I’m increasingly seeing the appeal of leaving this house and neighborhood altogether. I just spent so many years within five miles of this address and I spent them all with him.

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