It was a pretty typical morning, one that CBG and I have experienced many times over in the last almost four years.
I awake before the sun, usually just a few minutes before the alarm is due to go off. I turn it off, and snuggle up against CBG, warm and cozy. We lay there for several minutes, holding one another, not wanting to let go, but knowing that we have to. Another fantastic weekend has come to end.
He usually slides out of bed first and starts packing up his last few things while I lay there in the bed, forcing my mind away from being sad, and toward the week ahead. Sometimes — and especially this summer — I leap out of bed and start getting ready for an early run. But my girls are sleeping in their rooms, so this time it’s just not possible.
I help him gather up his last few things. There are hugs, kisses, an “I love you” or two. Always a “have a safe trip”. It’s always a rushed goodbye, since he needs to hit the highway to get back to his city in time to make it to work. We discovered early on that these early morning goodbyes were easier — no time to stretch things out, linger longingly at the door. The early morning goodbyes were smoother, with less tears, less sadness. There was simply never time for it.
I stood at the window and waved goodbye and he pulled out of the driveway and drove away. Another common scene. Always a smile, a wave, and a blown kiss. Some mornings after he was gone, if not out running, I would sit quietly and allow myself the luxury of a few tears. My apartment always felt cold, lonely and empty.
This morning after the door closed, the cold, empty loneliness wasn’t there. I’ve got a busy week ahead — the start of school for the girls, a house that still isn’t entirely unpacked, more marathon training. There’s hardly time to be lonely with so much going on right now.
Of course, there’s also the fact that CBG will only be gone for five more sleeps. And in five sleeps the end of our long-distance relationship saga will finally be over. This morning was our last early morning goodbye. Sure, there will still be times apart, since he will be spending every other weekend away visiting Ankle Biter. But two nights at a time, every two weeks is a walk in a park after what we’ve been through together for all of these years.
It’s still a little hard to believe that it’s all happening….that in five days he will be here and we will officially be starting our new life together. And yet here it is, rushing toward us, faster than I ever imagined possible. This morning was the last goodbye…just one more step toward together forever.