Diary of a Widower

Daily entries by a husband, who stayed behind with his two sons

Falling for his deceptive tears

FRIDAY, October 15 – Elated, Eamonn describes his being elected as a Representative of the Student Council. How he almost burst into tears when, to his astonishment, he was declared the winner. How he’d blinked away his tears, as boys and girls descended on him, showering him with congratulations.

He’s as proud as a peacock. I sit next to him at the dining room table where, despite his electoral success, he has to try the pumpkin soup. I wage an almost daily battle to get him to eat something new, even if it’s only one bite. His face clouds over, his lips pout, and tears make an appearance. This has become his response to a new food. Sometimes I fall for it, more often not.

This time he dissolves into uncontrollable sobs. I give him a hug. He points to the photo on the piano, apparently indicating the reason for his tears as I try to begin to make the connection. The framed photo is of Jenn with dog and children in the park. The month of October, pumpkin soup, the coming anniversary of Jenn’s death you can’t blame him. I remove the bowl. ‘All right, son, just eat what you like.’

Within five seconds a huge grin appears on his face and he’s chattering away again. I’ve probably fallen for fake tears, but the little guy who became Student Council Representative has earned it today.

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