|Sam (left) and Catherine (right) on Chirikof island.|
Our friends Sam and Catherine left this evening flight back to the East Coast. They arrived mid may in preparation for 8 weeks of field work with Patrick in Kodiak. As I tucked Stuey into bed tonight he whispered "I miss Sam and Catherine" as tears came down his cheeks. He was trying to be brave and not let the tears come down but they couldn't help themselves. Stuey laid in his bed, with his small fleece dot blanet up around him, his head against Tank's body.
"I miss Sam and Catherine, too." I paused, about to shut the door, then thought better.
"Do you want me to lay with you for a minute?" He shook his head yes.
I remembered that visceral sadness that occurs as a kid (and heck, even as an adult) when saying good bye to someone. Where the sadness takes over your body and you are lost in the moment and you can hardly think about a day going by without them there.
Stuey didn't know if or when he would see Catherine and Sam again and I had to explain that hopefully this winter we would see them both again in Kodiak and in Anchorage. I laid there for a minute, my head against his chest, his little arm around my neck.
As we laid there amongst the dogs, I looked up at his uncle's artwork on the wall. A jaws-like shark watercolor and wondered why it was up in his bedroom as scary as it is.
Stuey and I didn't say much and I thought about how much I love my kids meeting different archaeologists and people in our home. The experiences with our different friends and visitors brings a richness to life; one where new perspectives are considered. One where new foods are tried, new stories told, new friendships made.
It is the elixir of life, truly.