Whenever I am traveling away from my husband or he is traveling away from me, after we’ve said our goodbyes, and are on our way into the airport or bus or train terminal, there comes a long moment when I want to turn around and get yet another hug or deeper kiss and tell him once again how much I love him. Really tell him.
The same thing happens when I bid adieu to my daughter, son, Mom, sister or brother. In that long moment when they have dropped me at the airport, I realize that I don’t know when I’ll see them again. I try not to let my mind wander further to wondering if I’ll see them again. I have faith that I will. Yet I feel a deep loneliness and wrenching detachment in those minutes after departure.
The first few trips my husband went away when we were first living together and then married, were difficult for me. The sounds the house made and those that came in from outside were magnified and twisted. I slept with lights blazing on each floor. I piled all the pillows, including the decorative ones, like a fort around me. I put the phone next to me under one of those pillows within easy reach.
Gradually, as our love has matured and the hormonal imbalance of new love subsided, I’ve gotten better during our times apart. I’ve been able to relax and sleep better as opposed to tossing and turning or watching TV into the wee hours. I only light the first floor but not all three floors.
Still, there remains those minutes of panic: “Don’t go,” I want to say, but I don’t. “I’ll miss you. Take care of yourself, be careful.” I do say. It always seems that the last kiss and hug is too short and shallow especially with him going into the sky in that metal contraption to fly away, no matter the reason. I want to ignore the horn beeps and rush of traffic at Logan Airport and give him a kiss from my toenails through my heart…a kiss straight from a Hollywood movie.
(This even though I have projects I’m waiting to do while he is gone. This even though couples need a break from each other every now and again to refresh. This even though our families live in other cities and so we have reasons other than business or vacations to travel.)
I remember reading a quote from Toni Morrison who talked about having “the sheer good fortune of missing somebody even before they were gone” (or some approximation of those words). My husband hasn’t even booked his ticket yet and I already miss him. I Am I being a baby or what?