What do you do while you wait for something awful to happen?

I have no idea what to do with myself. I have tons of things I should be doing. Dropping everything to race up the coast left me with a to-do list a mile long. I’m exhausted but sleeping, which has always been difficult for me since Maddie died, is even harder for me now. I’m so afraid something will happen while I’m sleeping…as if somehow I can prevent it when I’m awake.

Mike and Annie are being so patient with me. I try to remind myself that Mike is sad, too. But grief gives you blinders, you know? It’s hard to see anything else when your own pain and fear cloud your vision.

I was thinking about this last pregnancy. I was very nervous to tell Jackie! that I was pregnant. She knew that she was never going to have her own children, and I was scared that my pregnancy was going to cause her pain. The morning after her walk, I showed up at her apartment armed with a bounty of coffee and pastries. She opened the door and I burst into tears. When I told her I was crying because I was pregnant, she started laughing at me. She understood why I was nervous, but she was only happy for us. She texted me later and said, “It’s going to be OK, and you are going to have another beautiful baby. I just hope I’m here to meet him or her. Love you.”

A couple of weeks later when I miscarried, she was so sad. She checked on me every day, even during her own treatments and scans. She always thought of others, even when no one would have blamed her for only thinking about herself.

I just can’t believe that I’m not going to laugh with her again, or dance, or lay in bed talking about life. Who am I going to text when someone breaks our top-secret Facebook rules? Who am I going to have dinner with the night before Thanksgiving? How am I going to do this without Jackie!?