Each stage of grief is represented here.

During the summer of our final year together everything began to break. In your attempts to solve the mystery of the ticking dishwasher my computer slipped from your hands and the screen shattered. I bought a new one, but there were other things that could not be replaced. They’re just stickers, you said, running your hand over that broken shell, the peeling mementos of all the places we had been together. You said, now you can collect new ones, not knowing how much you had cost me.

That same week the light bulb in the bedroom never came back on. And yet not all was a surprise. We always knew that the cat would one day knock over that picture frame on your desk, but we had not anticipated the pieces of glass that would embed themselves in the carpet. Now, our photos sit unclothed on the bookshelf and we slide on bare floors at night.

This is the home we have built, I tell you, these are the things we have grown used to. Even still, lipstick and eye shadow are bound to run out. Or I find myself wanting new bed sheets; I buy clothes that fit better, I learn that my hair looks good cut short. One day I leave the sink on, flooding the apartment, but by then, you say, you have grown used to the hardwood floors. This time, at least, there is nothing to fix.