Slices of Life: Anniversary thoughts -- part one

"I miss holding your hand. I miss telling you how to drive. I miss you bringing me coffee in the morning," writes Jill Pertler.

Jill Pertler
Jill Pertler
We are part of The Trust Project.

This week would have been 35 years for us. I thought we had 50 in the bag, but it wasn’t to be.

The day still holds meaning for me. I suppose it always will. I hope so. So, I pay homage — alone.

I miss dancing in the kitchen.

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I miss having someone to stand next to me in family photos. I miss you driving the boat and being our captain. I miss your catch phrases, like “Quite certainly this is the worst movie I’ve ever seen,” said one minute into any movie that didn’t immediately catch your attention.

I miss holding your hand. I miss telling you how to drive. I miss you bringing me coffee in the morning. I miss you calling me a squirrel, in reference to my darting from one task to another — in other words, my version of multitasking.


I miss your overwhelming knowledge about directions and cars and plumbing and life and all the things I didn’t know. I miss not having to worry about those things because you always had my back. I miss our little fights. Heck, I miss our big fights. I miss waking up next to you. I miss taking you — taking us — for granted. I miss your voice and your scent and your laughter.

I miss you.

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But, all around me, you are there.

When I smell the morning coffee, I think of you.

When I taste the salsa we used to make together, I think of you.

When the birds’ songs wake me in the morning, I think of you.

When the sunlight warms my skin, I think of you.

When I look at the moon or the stars, I think of you and know we still share the same sky.


You are in the wind, the water, the earth and in the everything all around me, all the time — if I pay attention.

I know that. Thank you.

I’m doing my very best to pay attention.

When clouds float overhead, I think of you.

When the lake is like glass, I think of you.

When falling leaves dance in the air, I think of you.

When I look in the mirror, I think of you.

When I open my eyes each morning, I think of you.


Your chair sits empty, but you are with me still.

I miss our walks. I miss driving across the country as your map-reader and co-pilot. I miss you questioning Siri every mile of the way. I miss eating with you, sharing secrets with you, raising our children with you and being bored with you. I miss our vacations and our everyday fun. I miss your texts and knowing you’d answer anytime I’d call. I miss listening to you, talking to you, lying next to you and making the bed together each morning. I miss your blue eyes and beautiful smile. I miss complaining about watching the NASA channel, but now know you are finally flying for real. I miss our beginning, our middle and our end. I miss being your squirrel.

I miss dancing with you, especially in the kitchen.

When I sleep, I dream of you.

When I see our kids, I see you.

When I smile, you are in my joy.

When I breathe, I breathe for you.

My heart beats for you. I love you. Still. Always. See you soon.

Until then.

Jill Pertler is an award-winning syndicated columnist, published playwright and author. Don’t miss a slice; follow the Slices of Life page on Facebook.

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