Friday, November 30, 2007

What was.. and what could have been

Today, the thrift store pick-up service came and took away our old sofa. Despite its faded and worn upholstery, its sagging sofa bed frame, and the fact that it was never going to darken the doorway of the new house, I became emotional upon seeing it leave.

Chris and I snuggled together on that sofa; we opened it up and watched movies together under a comforter on cold winter nights; we read, ate, napped, listened to music, and recovered from various colds & surgeries on it; Chris found relief in a few hours of sleep there many nights when he couldn't sleep flat in bed. He spent the last hours of his life on that sofa the night before he died. Did he sleep soundly or did he toss and turn, unable to get comfortable? I'll never know.

Today was also the closing day for the sale of the house that Chris and I bought back in June... back when life was so joyful and seemed so full of promise. After the call came from the lawyer's office to say the deal was officially closed and the cheque was ready to be picked up, I burst into tears.

After Chris died, I waffled back and forth several times about whether to keep the house. Despite his death, the things that we loved about the house were still there: the coved ceilings, the original glass doorknobs, the arch-topped front door, the pink and white (!) marble-tiled bathroom, the shaded front porch, the wonderful old neighbourhood full of trees, etc. We never aspired to a huge McMansion in the 'burbs with ensuite bathrooms and a 3-car garage. That charming little house was our dream home!

In the end I decided not to move into the house mainly because of what Chris loved most about it: the enormous kitchen (23' x 14'!). As a person who loves eating but only enjoyed cooking as Chris' sous-chef, I was haunted by the vast emptiness of that kitchen. I saw myself lost in there without him - without his love of fresh, savoury ingredients, his fearless experimention with new recipes - pouring his love for me into his creative outlet of cooking. That kitchen was barren for me without Chris.

I decided to let the house go, to pass it on to someone who would fill it with love and laughter as Chris and I had planned to do. Last weekend I held a house-cooling party at the house for friends and family to thank them for their support and also to leave some good karma for the family that bought it. I decorated the house with lots of Christmas lights and hung our stockings by the chimney with care (in the hopes that Chris' spirit soon would be there). We had a wonderful evening with lots of laughter, a few tears, great music, and good food... Chris would have loved it.

No comments: