Rob left the health office and I picked up the tongue depressor and sat back down in front of the freezer. I attacked the ice ferociously and as I did the tears flowed freely from my eyes. I didn’t even bother to wipe them away. The ice came flying off in a blur.
The ‘why’s’ and ‘if only’s’ were swirling around me. I’d been in this place before. Lives cut short. The ripple effect. The devastation that remains in the wake.
The tongue depressor snapped in half. I stopped. I used my t-shirt to wipe away my tears. I tossed the buster tongue depressor in the garbage can and then I scooped up the chunks of ice and tossed them in the sink. I wiped down the freezer and the water off the floor. I filled the ice cube trays with water and set them in the freezer. Done.
As I dried my hands, I gazed out the window, looking out over the lake. The water was calm, the setting sun reflected on the water. A respite. Definitely.
As I took it all in, a small yellow butterfly alighted upon the window screen. A spark of joy shot through me. I stopped drying my hands, stood still and smiled.
“Thank you, friend,” I whispered. I needed that.