Ariella left for NH yesterday. Briefly, I saw other family members who are staying there now, as they came to swoop her up. And then left.

I was bereft.

Ariella and I had been in this little house together for – well, since mid-March. Mostly seeing just each other. Mixed with delightful afternoons babysitting for now 17 month old Cecilia. Then stealing a few moments at her pick up with Nika.

And within those 2 months together there felt like chapters of feelings. At first, yes, I did some art. And a little art happened in the interim: a fabric piece already hung on the wall. (not the new idea with pins shown above)

First chapter. What was that one? Soooo long ago. March. Cold. It involved long long walks and even explorations for longer ones we would explore come summer. It was a love affair with the woods themselves. And sweet times talking. Kind of like landing on the earth – it was that chapter.

Then, Ariella started teaching online. And doing her online yoga. And getting busy in ways that were about how to be here, but also how to go forward.

What was I doing? Oh yes. I had discovered that not using my right hand had led to pretty lousy pain/sleepless nights as the scar tissue hardened. Thanks to Ariella’s advice, I started doing PT with Anson Ly, Hunter’s brother-in-law. It was NOT easy at first. And – gracious, it takes time… each day. Day after day after day. Argh! I compensated for it by taking more walks. But just with Peaches. Discovering some beautiful woods I’d never have found “if”.

“If” I’d been off to NH, in the usual course of events.

But that wasn’t happening. And the weather was getting nicer. And I was getting a garden. And Ariella was getting – well – keen to get to that place we’d be “if” that was possible.

And yes. It was possible. Is possible.

I’ll see her in a few weeks.

All of us doing things slowly, carefully. Conscious of the times.

Did I leave out an ENTIRE chapter??? I did. It was the 5 days a week babysitting for Cecilia. It was watching all 3 of us fall in love with each other. It was, at first, finding grass to watch her first wide-legged clumsy walk: step, step, step. Oops. Get up, brush yourself off… It was slowly progressing down the wide woods path, hearing the cacaphony of the peepers evening song. It was dog after dog after dog in the dog park giving her messy licks (“kisses”) as she learned to give a “gentle pats” in return.

Cecilia was over today. Running into my arms. Getting hugs and kisses and giggling and giggling. We love each other.

We miss Ariella. But, yes….

The love goes on.

And on.