Today I am picking the carrot out of the fact that I should have been married exactly seven years.
What would we have been doing? Probably popping the cork on a nice bottle of red. Settling in to watch Masterchef. We may have ordered in, but that’s not a given.
I’ve said before that M and I didn’t place much stock in anniversaries of any kind – birthdays were about as excited as we got, usually marked by a card and, if He was very unlucky, a home-made, and therefore deflated, Victoria sponge.
Instead, we lived by my granddad’s old adage; ‘Every day’s a Christmas day’.
Not much would have been different today, actually, except for the company.
As it is, I’m re-enacting scenes out of Sorry, where I am a sort of female Timothy Lumsden, having my dinner served to me by my Mother who then does the dishes afterwards. Fortunately she is far cry from Lumsden’s mother, and tolerates my shameful bad language with characteristic equanimity.
I have glanced at the photographs on the sideboard of this time seven years ago and it feels as if I’m looking at a different couple. That bloke wearing the big smile and the tails, next to that bird in the long dress. Figments of some distant lifetime. How is it possible that the day depicted would signal the start of just five years of marriage?
I have spent the day trying to put a name on the hollow space within me. It’s the part which paints a grey wash of sadness over everything. Sometimes it’s so grey it’s opaque – other times it’s cygnet-coloured. But no matter the hue, it leaves everything slightly out-of-tune.
I can only come up with one name for the hollow space.
Happy anniversary, pet. Wherever you are.