How can I put away the evidence of our life together? How can I erase Alan’s life from my home? Of course, I can’t, but I almost feel like that’s what I’m trying to do when I went through some of his things yesterday. I couldn’t get rid of anything, so I put it in the attic. The process isn’t even close to finished, but I know it is something I have to do. I definitely have mixed feelings about it.
It is comforting, in a way, to see evidence that Alan existed, with me, in this home. But it is also supremely painful. I cried over a credit card statement, of all things, that showed all the little transactions that constructed a history of part of his life. I saw the charge at Dairy Queen at Jekyll Island on our vacation this summer, all of the gas stations he went to, his Thursday lunches at McDonalds and his weekend thrift store shopping with Ashley. I saw the charges in Cherokee and then all the transactions suddenly stop, on 9/16.
I also saw birthday cards he gave me and anniversary cards I gave him. I saw the toothbrush he used on our trip to Cherokee and all the stuff that I have been keeping in place since that terrible day when I came back alone from that trip. I still left his razor on our bathroom sink and his toothbrush in the toothbrush holder. I don’t know why.
I wish I could say I was happy about this process or that I feel like it is a way to move forward. Instead, I feel almost like I am turning my back on our life together. I needed to do this, so the mixed feelings are not welcome. Somehow I’ll just have to manage to get through this.