We can’t afford to buy this house, the last house we shared.
I’ll never forget the day you moved in, leaving you welcome notes on your window and coming home to celebratory times.
I’ll never forget that week, not long after you moved in, when Léon had to leave to go away for work for three months. Just me and you and a lounge room toaster and too much tv and vegan snacks and onesies and twice as many pets as people.
I’ll never forget when you were sick in bed, coming home to find you still curled up, insisting you needed to go to the doctor and to call your mum.
I’ll never forget the day you came home and told me they weren’t sure what it was yet, and listing the possibilities.
I’ll never forget coming home and you were already there.
I’ll never forget the feeling as my heart fell to my knees. The adrenaline and fear.
I’ll never forget asking you what you wanted to do, I don’t know what I thought the answer would be, but maybe I should have been more surprised when it was – ‘go to a punk show and get boozy’.
I’ll never forget the day you got your port, or your first week of chemo, or being told what to do should there be a chemo drugs spill.
I’ll never forget the helplessness, lying in your bed and stroking your back, making endless toast and facetiming you with your cat from home while you were in hospital.
I’ll never forget that you didn’t want me to help, didn’t want me to do the things you couldn’t, and being hurt you wouldn’t let me. But also trying really hard to not be hurt, because I did understand why.
I’ll never forget the day you said you needed to move back to your parents home, we both knew it was coming.
I’ll never forget decorating that last Christmas tree at home with you, just before you moved out of the house.
I’ll never forget when you told me you didn’t want to die.
And now we can’t keep our little old house. We just can’t afford it. We will move out and it will be sold and inevitably knocked down to make room for some mansion for a rich family.
But maybe you would think with all those unpleasant memories I wouldn’t want to stay?
No, even with all of those things, it is still the happy times that shine brightest. The laughter, the ridiculous times. Every smile, every corner, every step, every artwork placement, every conversation, every drink, every getting ready to go some place, all the friends, every inch of that terrible patio, every bit of paint damage, all of it is happy memories.
I’m sorry I can’t keep it for you. I know how much home meant to you, and I know what it meant when you told me it feels like home here.