I have been at my in-laws for a week and a half. We do not talk about Anja, so we will not talk about her today. We will not light a candle, or spend a quiet moment reflecting, or sing her a song. I carry the weight of everyone else’s silence on my shoulders and wish for what – I don’t know. I don’t know what the recognition I want from others looks like.
The wind is blowing hard across the marsh, here, and night is falling and I can hear R and E on the porch, talking before dinner. A is everywhere and nowhere here. She is in the baby photos of E, photos that have shocked me, left me breathless with the resemblance; she is in the baby things saved for her and used now by E as toys; she is in the photo of E and R taken only days before she was gone, the one that sits innocently tucked into a kitchen cupboard and that breaks my heart again and again and again.
Today, I remember Anja on my own, silently, whispering her name into the wind, so that she is in the wind, too. I write her name in the red mud on the edge of the Atlantic, so that she is there, too. I summon her into the cold corners of this old house, my little ghost girl: come back.