"She'd be so proud of you".
"If Liane could see what you've done..."
"You must be so happy to have honoured this way"
So often there are turns of phrase delivered gently and kindly that ring hollow. They echo in my mind, drift into my heart and pinch at the strings in there, gnawing away below the surface like an underwater current. There's a sort of constant uneasiness - a dark discomfort that I can't shake or soothe.
The truth is I don't want Liane to be proud of me from afar. I don't want to sit and look back at what I have achieved since my soulmate died. I don't feel suddenly better from growing without her.
I want to hold her hand. I want to whisper in her ear and see her face react to the words. I want her to look me in the eyes and see the spark of belonging that I felt for her and from her. I need her to be by my side and to advise me on what to do, carefully unpacking my messy thoughts as they tumble out onto her lap. I want to touch the soles of my feet against hers just before we fall asleep. I want to pick up the phone and send her my inane daydreams. I want to plan holidays for the two of us instead of seeing my friends travel the world in pairs.
I wish she was here. It's that simple.