The clock sounds unnaturally loud in this quiet room.

I put the radio on for company this morning, but it didn’t work. It works most mornings, but it didn’t work today.

It’s been one of those days. You know them, I’m sure. I’ve drifted around, too restless to settle, too distracted to work, too consumed by everything that’s gone before and everything that will surely come, but paying no attention to the immediate and complete and all-encompassing present, until suddenly, I heard it permeating the various layers of my thoughts and reflections and memories and my me-ness. The clock sounded unnaturally loud.

I’ve lived alone almost my entire adult life. I lived alone for an entire year after my last relationship broke down and flowed away from me like so much liquid escaping a broken cup; while I curled up and licked my wounds and dealt with the anger, dealt with the betrayal. And then Dmitri stormed into the quiet ocean that was my life, and he took it over; he chopped it and changed it, he filled my house with his noise, and his life, and his movements, and his his-ness.Β For months, we were a we, and then he left. I knew that day would come, because he wasn’t here permanently, and we both had to deal with it.

I’ve been afraid to say it, afraid to appear vulnerable in the eyes of a world I sometimes fear doesn’t see me, but I’ve said it. I’ve said it all. I miss Dmitri. I miss the dreams I dared to dream. I’m incredibly lonely, and not even Grimalkin, curled up beside me and lost in his feline dreams, can ease that. Not even my words, usually a source of such comfort, can ease that.

It’s a day for listening to time slipping away. One second at a time.