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Dear Carl 

So the last few days have been strange & I thought I’d leave off writing until I went back to work & saw how I felt. 

How I felt is like I’m still in denial to be honest. 

It doesn’t feel real to me yet. Not at all. How can you possibly be dead?? You’re my Carl – MY best friend, my lover, my soulmate. How??? Things like this happen to others!?! Not to us.  You’re away, in Ipswich visiting family. In the hills with Katie or Chris out of phone range.  You aren’t gone. 

I was fine on the first day at work, well as fine as I could be. It was a day shift.  I didn’t cry & I sorted stuff out, my expired passwords etc.  I was relieved to be back in a sense. But then last night…a night shift….well, a reduced hours nightshift at this time, I realised just how fragile a tightrope I’m walking for work. When I’m sat at that desk it isn’t true. You’re still present. Still there. Your name is in my email inbox, your lovely words, how loving we were to each other. We were so loving, so soft, devoted to each other Carl.  The love was so so strong.  Reading your words again they almost billowed out of the screen and covered me.  I felt like people could see them, burying under my skin, into my heart.  People could see the tears in my eyes.  I hid my face but they just poured down my cheeks.  So I don’t know if I am ready.  I feel like it could almost be a step back because when I’m there I’m in denial.  I talk like you’re gone & accept people’s condolences….but my heart is whispering, he’s not gone. He’s still here…he’s just round the corner. 

I couldn’t go to the canteen because I can see you sitting there, waiting for me. I can see you in your scruffy utility vest, smell the familiar lovely smell of you, the dogs, the cold.  I can see you warming me up some food, some chilli, or risotto.  The pain in my heart is so fierce I feel like it could burn me out.  Your presence has changed work into a place where I can’t bear to be because memories are crucifying me & also because it takes me back to where I want to be. Back with you.

This picture was what you left on my car windscreen one icy morning.  I discovered it at 7am after a long night shift.

This is work. This is why it’s hard. 
I love you Carl. I can’t believe you’re gone. I can’t. 

Caroline xxx