I walk through the rooms in my silent home gathering treasures.
A doll dress and bonnet on a stool; papers, markers and crayons on the coffee table; pink and white plastic flowers twisted together in a bouquet; a plastic doll’s baby bottle; wooden popsicle sticks left over from a craft activity; containers of sparkles; so many other simple, yet magical, things.
And it’s so quiet.
I gather these things together and make a pile on the corner of the kitchen counter. One, two, three, four trips down the stairs to stow everything back in the plastic bins they were pulled from a week ago.
When it wasn’t so quiet.
Downstairs there are dolls scattered everywhere. Some resting from the gymnastics display we were treated to a few days ago. Others, well cared for and tended over the past week, look up at me as if to ask where their care-giver is this morning.
Because it’s so quiet in the house.
Outside, roofers have appeared at the neighbour’s house. Their chatter and the sound of shingles being removed from the roof break the silence. Our driveway is adorned with chalk drawings; a fairy swing made from twigs sits in the garden; glitter adorns the sidewalk and sparkles in the morning sun. There is no longer a pink bike and helmet near the garage and no little-girl chatter calls “Grandma! Come see this!”
And, despite chatter from the roofers working next door, it’s just so quiet.
There’s still a hippo in my bathroom. There’s an entire pile of assorted wild animals on the ledge of the bathtub as a matter of fact. I think I’ll leave them there for a few days as gentle memories.
Because it’s way too quiet.
I miss you already, Ladybug Girl.