I've been back for a week, and until tonight I thought I was managing really well. I embarked on a comprehensive reorganisation of the upstairs, working out how to change my workspace, bedroom and spare room so they would work better for me, and in the process sort, clear and get rid of the accumulated caches of Stuff - photos, papers, sewing, clothes, cards, saved wrapping paper - lurking conveniently out of sght up here. (I've always known that the best thing about having an upstairs is that you can so easily stow messy stuff away out of visitors' sight.)
Moving furniture around was the easiest and most entertaining part, even though some of the moves didn't work and had to be undone (and I'll need to get strong helpers for the final shift, bringing Harvey's desk upstairs). Today I finally got round to the hardest part, the actual stuff sorting.
And of course there were the cards, and the photos - the last few years back before Harvey became ill, that I'd never got around to putting neatly away in albums, but had just bundled together when we moved. Christmases at Farm Road and in Auckland, Waiheke holidays, even some spare, faded copies of our 25-year-old wedding photos. Good, I thought, maybe I can get some restored versions done of these.
I suppose it was inevitable that after all that revisiting of the vanished past, I crashed at dinner time and felt really miserable sitting at the table, eating unexciting leftovers and watching crappy TV for the company, and for fending off the awful quiet of a house with no one else in it. I know this bad patch won't last, but when you'e in it that's not much consolation.
PS: And then, of course, by the time I'd written this post and realised it was time to do one for Something Else to Eat and written that too, I felt better. And today (Friday) in came the warm comments from Deborah and Julie - thank you, you're wonderful.