Are you my….

When I was a very little child, maybe five or six, I was an avid reader. Dr. Seuss, Tolstoy, you know what every first grader reads. But there was one book I could never, EVER read by myself. The title of this book is Are you my mother? by P.D. Eastman. I loved and hated this book simultaneously. I remember grabbing it and taking it to my mom and begging her to read it. Are you my mother? garnered every emotion I, at the ripe age of five, had. For those that are unfamiliar with the book, it’s about a baby bird that falls out of its nest and walks around town encountering objects that become bigger and more menacing.
The sheer thought of being lost, without my mother was terrifying, maybe because she was the only person I had, maybe because I was a scaredy cat, who knows. Near the end of his journey ( I always knew the baby bird was a boy, because only a boy would be stupid enough to get lost) the bird encounters a GIANT bulldozer. Even though I had read this book so many times the blue dye of the cover was rubbed off, I knew this was the tragic end for the baby bird.
Then something magical happens, the bulldozer picks up the baby bird and puts him back into the comfort of his nest, where his mother is anxiously waiting. I, even as a very young child, knew this ending, I knew that the stupid baby boy bird would find his way home. But what if he didn’t? What if for one moment, one second, the story changed and the giant bulldozer crushed the baby bird instead of rescuing him. I am crushed like I imagined the baby would be.
I find my soul is homeless. I am lost, not from my mother but from myself. There is a gaping hole in my soul and just like the baby bird, I am terrified. Peter was my everything, my secret keeper, my best friend, the father of my children, truly my partner in crime. The man who made me laugh more than anyone I knew. Now I find myself searching for something intangible. This gaping hole is not about dating or finding a husband. This is more cellular, more visceral. Every man I see, I find myself asking “Is that him”? Is he the man that’s going to fill my soul. Sometimes I catch a glimpse of a tall man or a red headed man or a man with a baseball cap and think “Oh, Thank God, Peter where have you been? Then I remember Oh God, that’s not him, he’s dead.

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