Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: New Year (05/09/05)
TITLE: Dear Diary
By Chris Miller
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ADD TO MY FAVORITES
Susan, my oldest, gave me this book for Christmas. She called it a journal, but that sounds
kinda fancy to me. She said that her counselor told her to write her feelings down, that it would
make her get through this grieving period. I don’t know if I’m quite up to that, but I’ll give it a
try. You’re going to have to bear with me; it’s been a few years now since I’ve been in school,
and writing was never my thing.
According to that State Farm calendar over there by the frig, it appears to be a new year. It
sure seems strange not seeing Millie’s appointments sprawled all over January. In fact, for the
first time in forty-five years of marriage, the page is blank.
Watching the ball drop at Time’s Square without Millie sitting across the card table playing
Scrabble last night was just plain empty. Even if she did always manage to land on those triple
point squares with the J or Z, I still enjoyed playing. Losing word games to her was the
best way to spend a quiet December 31st that I can think of.
Am I talking about my feelings yet? I’m not sure how this is supposed to work. Let’s see...
I’m still holding a grudge against that Marge Benson at church. She sat next to me at the Golden
Agers lunch so she could comfort me. Humph! “George, you should be happy for Millie. She’s
with the Lord. I’m sure you’re not selfish enough to want her back in this sinful world.” Then
she put her arm around me and kissed me on the cheek.
I held my tongue because my mama used to say, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say
anything at all.”
I wanted to tell her, “Look, Marge, you don’t really know me. I’m a selfish old man, and I’d
much rather have her back here with me.” I bet that would have shocked her socks off. Yes, sir,
that would’ve caused quite a ruckus at the old folk’s luncheon.
I’m not too excited about making any of those resolutions that people talk about. I don’t care
if I lose weight or not, and I figure if I haven’t given up smoking by now, it’s not going to
I might be interested though in what the pastor had to say last Sunday. Rev. Foster was
talking about starting a Read Through the Bible program. Maybe I could tackle that. Millie
would be right happy, I’m sure. She always wanted me to read the Bible more. I just never
managed to have the time or gumption, I guess. She was the book worm in this duo, but I sure
enjoyed sitting in my rocker while she cuddled up on the sofa and read.
I know I’m rambling now, my friend, but it just feels hard to keep to one train of thinking.
You know, I don’t even know who I am now without her. I don’t know how that happens;
forty-five years ago, I wouldn’t have guessed how much you can become a part of someone else
and she a part of you.
Funny thing, I wouldn’t even mind her nagging me about wearing my old, orange
windbreaker out to dinner, or griping about the way I hibernate in the basement at my old desk. At least, I
could hear her voice one more time. I know that the kids made that video of her a week before
she died, but I just can’t bring myself to watch it. I think it would just make me miss her all the
I need to be wrapping it up here. I’ll try to keep writing most days. Maybe the new year will
be better than I think. Millie always told me I’d be OK, that God would be with me. She even told
me that I was the marrying type and should find me another wife. I can’t quite imagine that now,
but maybe, in time.
Well, Diary, it’s you and me. Happy New Year.
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