It’s pretty rare T sees me cry, even a little bit. In the last six years, this is probably only the third time she’s sat with me while I’ve lost control and sobbed. Sobbed, sobbed and sobbed.
It took a while for us to connect. Everything hurt inside and she kept asking me to speak but I had nothing to say. I started to cry and still had nothing to say. Then she asked me do you think I love you less by not coming? and that was me gone. When I felt like I was going to die if she didn’t do something I asked her to sit with me and she did, of course. She cuddled until the tears subsided enough for us to speak. Not being there doesn’t change how much I feel for you, she said. I will be thinking about you, I want to see photos. A part of me will still be at your day – more than just a part of me.
With 5 minutes to go I asked her to read the book I’d brought with me – The Fox and The Star by Coralie Bickford-Smith.
This book is stunning. Buy a copy and fall in love with it like I have. It is mesmerising.
I only bought it this week by fluke, though I’d seen the hardback copy before – but it felt very appropriate for today.
It’s about a small fox who has a star as his only friend. They spend lots of time together and play in the forest. Then one day the dark comes but Fox can’t find Star. He looks and looks but cannot find Star. Eventually he hides in his den and feels awful for a long, long time.
After the time to feel bad has passed, Fox is tempted back outside. He strays out of the forest into a clearing which is terrifying… but then looks up to see a sky full of stars. The story ends with Fox feeling content that his star is up there, somewhere, shining down.
On the last page of the book is an image of the fox, filled totally inside himself with stars.
There is something very comforting about the book. Right now I need to hibernate and feel awful. But eventually, I hope I will feel okay enough to leave the den where everything feels awful, step forward into the scary place of getting married without her there watching… and take comfort in knowing that she is still watching, taking part, somewhere close by… just not quite in the way I’d hoped.
This too shall pass, right? I feel awful.