I find myself doing some really crazy stuff these days. Yesterday, I was cleaning out my inbox (Leonard always made fun of the fact that I had literally thousands of emails that I never read, but always got, because I signed up for 11 million different mailing lists) and I sent him an email, asking him to come back. He didn't respond.
The reason I was going through my email was because I was looking for these pictures. They were taken by his cousin in April on another one of the best nights of my life.
His cousin, Deb, works at the bar, which is located in a bowling alley. We had gone out on one of our "Once Annual Date Nights" (which were almost up to "Twice Annual" seeing as our daughter could now baby sit. We were driving around, without an idea of what to do when we decided to stop in and see Deb. This is (in case you can't tell by the flag and the bull) a Country Western bar. Whenever we went up there, Leonard delighted in giving the guy who ran the bull $5 here and there, to pay for others to ride...so he could watch and laugh. On this night, I think he spent about $75 in bull rides for others. As the night, and the beer wore on (he had a built in designated driver in me), he started thinking of riding the bull himself. "Leonard, you're going to hurt yourself....", that was Deb's response. Mine was something like, "I really don't want to end a great night in the ER, Honey." Just when I had thought we talked him out of it, a girl got on and rode the bull. Well hell, "if she can do it...screw it, I'm trying it." Screw it, I'm trying it is a variation of a phrase my husband used often---at work, while programming and stuck in a tough spot; at home, while fixing any one of a gazillion things that always seemed to go wrong; playing Euchre (a card game that I have found out doesn't exist the whole country over) when he only had 1 trump but didn't want to give up the call. Off he went.
"Start Slow..." was his only warning. He did start slow and then steadily had them go faster and faster until it was (almost) top speed. And he stayed on. And he looked so funny that Deb took these pictures with her camera phone. And I spent the entire time worried and waiting for him to fall off and crack his neck, break an arm, bust a kneecap...but he didn't. Not Mr. "Ten Feet Tall and Bullet proof". But he did aggravate an old work injury in his wrist, that plagued him every day until the day ...well, until that day. And he did have bruises on his thighs the next morning. But, he had fun. So much fun. That's what I'm missing.
That was also the night that he paid the band (even though bands take requests for free) to play something by Johnny Cash. They ended up playing about half of "A Boy Named Sue" and then the singer couldn't remember the rest of the words and they went on to something else. Again, me upset. He, just laughing.
I miss him. I miss his face. I miss our dates. I miss his laugh. I cannot list all that I miss.
I took my children to that same bowling alley on Friday. I couldn't take sitting in the mess...er... house anymore. I thought bowling and seeing Deb would be a good idea. We got up there and James had a blast. Deb's boyfriend went with him through the haunted house that they have set up where the bull usually is. I was "okay" for about 20 minutes, but my eyes kept drifting over to the place where we used to sit...at the end of the bar, and I lost it in a quiet way. I still can't believe that we won't do that again. All I can say is that Weekends Suck. In such a big way. On the one hand I am grateful to have the children home because I don't feel as lonely. On the other hand, he is not here...and weekends were us.
I talk to him out loud whenever the children are not home, telling him how much I need him...how much I miss him...and he just never answers.