Leila Summers
Author • Coach • Creative
excerpt 'This tobacco is old. It may even be two years old and I've forgotten how to roll cigarettes. In desperation, I manage somehow. I feel nauseous; although I'm not sure the sick feeling is from the nicotine. Through the smoke, I remember the times we sat on these stairs together. How some nights you would come home late and, missing you in bed, I'd find you out here; smoking cigarettes and staring at the house. We'd sit together, nestled in our lush garden with elephant ears, palm trees, and bamboo extending like tender fingers holding our beloved home. We knew we were lucky to have found it. The house seems so empty now. I feel utterly alone. What will I tell the girls?

I sit in the darkness for a long time. Tiny ants crowd around me. I barely notice. I just sit. I smoke. In utter disbelief and despair. Perhaps I am waiting to be tired enough to go to sleep. Perhaps I'm hoping that I am asleep, and I will soon awaken from this nightmare. When I curl up into bed alone, I draw your pillow towards me, and then I see the saddest thing. Your wrinkled sleeping shorts are still under your pillow. I clutch them against me and weep until I feel as though my lungs are being torn from my chest.'

Excerpt from Chapter 2 - It Rains In February: A Wife's Memoir of Love and Loss