You knew it would come to this, one day the kids leave the nest. You are left with yourself and your things, the memory of who you were as a couple and who you will be now that they’re gone. And it is hard to think about, hard to believe. When you drive to the dump how quick and easy it is to leave those things behind. The kid’s vanity you bought at IKEA, not worth saving. The image of her, your oldest daughter, late nights in despair cutting herself there. Hard to swallow that. Hard to accept. Working through the edges of her pain in her diary. Like a map to the dark center of her. And the old pictures you have of her on the tricycle, you’re reminded of that by the squeaking of a windmill wobbling in the wind. How you should have put some grease on that trike but never did. You said it’s one way I can keep track of her by the sound of that squeaking. And it is so hard to let them go. You dropped her off at the airport and she came back to the passenger side window, one goodbye wasn’t enough. You reached your hand through the open window to hers and gripped it, and in that clasp you could say more of what you really wanted to say. Maybe you can save that scene and see how it feels to replay it in your mind. Or view it as a temporary thing like a sand castle, and resign yourself to the fact you can make more.