Tuesday, February 22, 2011, 10:30 am

Some of the practical decisions are the most difficult. Dave sleeps in the other room. As I work through the bills and determine how to squeeze out a few more dollars in the name of efficiency and added nickel-and-dime medical costs, I am faced with a logical but emotionally-charged  idea: Namely, to drop the NY Times subscription and his cell phone number.

Practically, it makes sense. Dave is not reading anything. This is so painful to me I can’t even explain. Reading is one of his loves. He absorbs words. Or I guess he did. That has just seemed to disappear.

The cell phone is plain funny! He has had it for years, but never turns it on, so no one can call him. I have to look up the number to even consider a call. Only one time was it valuable – during the Nisqually, WA earthquake in 2001. After dialing and redialing dozens of times, I was able to hear his voice and be assured her was safe. The connection was horrid as I was driving. So I said, unthinkingly, I’ll call you back for a better connection. Duh. Of course, there was no way to get through again! But we knew we were both safe during a frantic time and had a plan to get Leah. I digress.

So why does this sensible decision hurt? Because he just doesn’t need this service anymore. The phone was for his convenience to call out in case of an emergency or if he was running unusually late. Dropping the number is recognition of shutting down. Shutting down what is his from what is mine. A separation. Differences in our lives. What I need separate from what we need.  A shutting down of his life. I’m really not trying to hurry anything. But I am trying to be practical about what needs to be taken care of for our household. It is the bane of a planner/organizer-type personality.

His dress shirts sit in the laundry basket awaiting a trip to the cleaners. Shouldn’t I just take them in? Does he need them? He won’t wear them, I think. If I take them in, then if he doesn’t wear them again they will be ready for. For what? Giving away? Hanging in the closet? If I keep them, then his smell will cling for those moments we’ll long for him. Leah might never allow their release. Would I?

There are just some things I must do by myself. If I don’t mention it he likely won’t know. That feels dishonest. But how would I feel if he were dropping things that I associated with my living? Yet, spending money on unused things doesn’t make any sense. Transition to retirement as the base income is finite. It requires logical decisions. I am in the midst of Ill-logic.

We’ve talked about the phone. Come to think of it I’m not sure what his response was, if any. Maybe I just talked about it. This sucks.

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