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  • It's been nearly six months, but each morning she wakes without him next to her, and it begins again.

    She made it through the holidays, alone with their son. She made it through what would have been his birthday, raising a toast to him with friends. But it's almost Valentine's Day--a holiday she's always thought of as silly--and every song, every familiar gesture she sees in her son, every seemingly simple daily activity is saturated with his absence.

    Last night, she couldn't sleep. She rarely has restful nights anymore. She was up, half-listening to quiet music as she read. He loved music. Lived for it.

    "But ever the malcontent

    He left without incident

    Vanished into thin air..."

    The young widow laid on her side, fetal, the familiar black tide of sadness rising within her. She is tired of crying. Exhausted even. He wasn't a perfect man, but they had their perfect moments, and those are what she clings to alone in their bed.

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