The Weight of the Hours

January 01, 2006

One of the hardest parts about coping with Michele being gone is the hours and hours of time fill. Most week nights aren't too awful; between dinner and household chores I can usually fill the time until 8:30 or 9:00. Then it's an hour of mindless television before going to sleep.

Weekends have two speeds, slow and excruciatingly slow. This weekend has been the later, excruciating. Thursday evening was wonderful as I had dinner at a friend's home. We played games and talked until the wee hours of the morning. It had been a long time since I was up until 2:30 and it felt good. Friday morning I slept in until past 10:00, something of a record for me lately. But then reality set in, I had four long days to fill before Tuesday with its normal work day arrived to fill the time for me.

I have watched movies, been to the book store, grocery shopped, and spent time digging through my storage lockers. About the only real thing I accomplished was getting all of Michele's old work clothes to Goodwill. I guess I never realized how much of my time was spent just being with Michele. I don't have good "by myself" skills anymore, if I ever did.

Earlier this evening I chatted via VoIP with a friend and managed to get myself laughing uncontrollably. I realized that the laughter was a way of dumping stress, of letting out the tense energy that builds inside of me as I struggle to cope with hour after hour of unending emptiness. I just want to crawl into bed and sleep.

Only 35 hours until I return to work Tuesday.

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.