Thinking of tears as moisturizer

I went to a garden brunch the other day and had an awful time. It was a stunning morning, bright and hot only in the sun. There were lots of lovely, well-spoken people with smiles on their faces and love in their hearts and healthful, carefully prepared food, including plenty of bacon and several pies from the Pie Lady, with ice cream. I was miserable.

There were also a few happy old couples, who are particularly hard to take. Everything about it made me sad because Janice would have loved it and wasn’t there and won’t ever be. I’ve never felt so alone.

Of all the lovely, well-spoken people, I knew only the hostess. I’d been introduced to a couple of other people, but I don’t call that knowing somebody. I recognized them and greeted them and had nothing else to say.

When things are especially swell, as in the evening when a soft breeze caresses and there’s no racing at the fairgrounds, I get weepy. It doesn’t make sense to me either. My mind, though, seems not to be mine. Maybe I belong to it, because I keep thinking how much Janice would have liked that particular breeze at that particular temperature. I know she got her share of gentle breezes, but not right away. I know that later, and meanwhile I’m trying not to sob.

I’ve come to think of tears as moisturizer. Sometimes they tickle, though, and I get to practice focusing my awareness on that maddening tickling sensation until I’m clear that it’s not me or the world. It’s just a sensation and will pass away. Now and then I wipe my face.

I heard a conversation Janice and I had a year and a half ago when she said something kinda snippy, and I remembered that sometimes she was less than fun for me to be around. I hadn’t exactly forgotten that part of us; the loving, kind Janice is more true. Even from this slight remove I can see how minor our quirks and mismatches were, although neither of us seemed to think so at the time.

Sometimes she could be a pain, as can we all. She was my own personal pain, though, and I miss her, snippy or not. Now and then I laugh about us.

So I’ve got a simile for this overwhelming sadness over an imperfect mortal, namely me, since there’s no reason to be sad for Janice. Losing my mate has been like losing a leg. That when I had the leg I’d get an occasional twinge of arthritis in my knee means nothing. I’m down one leg.