I woke up on Tuesday morning to the feeling of missing my mother so much that it ached, and in those first moments of consciousness it seemed that the only possible solution was to lie back down and re-cover myself in my covers and let the sound of the rain take me elsewhere, but instead I climbed out of bed, stuffed a pile of dirty clothes into the washer and sat down in the kitchen to write the following email.
I woke up today feeling homesick for you. I'm not sure if it was the result of a dream I'd had or a sadness triggered by the rain or if it's because another weekend is over and I have to go back to work, but I'm missing you so damn much right now and it's coming from a place that I can't reach and I'm afraid that it will never go away.
Anyway, I love you and I miss you.
I pressed 'send' and then I put my clothes in the dryer and took a shower and made my way to work and in the late afternoon, after the business of the day had dulled the aching ever-so-slightly, my brother Bryan called me on FaceTime and he was sitting in the living room of my parents' condo next to my mom who was propped up in the brown leather La-Z-Boy that I can still so vividly remember arriving brand new in our living room on Stafford Drive so many years ago and she was smiling in a way that I knew really meant something and then instantly I was okay, as if seeing her happy was an antidote to an affliction I feared might kill me. So I took a screenshot, chatted with Bryan for a little bit longer and went back to work.
On the train ride home later that night I was absentmindedly thumbing through pictures of a work project that I'd taken with my phone when I came across the screenshot from earlier in the day. I hadn't bothered to look at it after I'd snapped it and so glimpsing the smile on my mom's face again made my heart leap and it was pure magic to see her that happy and right then the homesick feeling passed and all I could feel was lucky, incredibly so, to have had that small moment of happy.