It’ll be a long time before I stop thinking “if I had just looked in the folder sooner.” We have spent so much time this week looking for that little blue book. Sifting through papers, page at a time; methodically searching places we know it can’t possibly be. And then searching again. And then a third time, because things always show up somewhere you’ve already looked.
I still don’t have that sick feeling that something is really wrong — not like I did the first time I went looking for my Ricks’ diploma after we left Hawaii. It was years before I could admit it, but the first time I went looking at and it wasn’t where it should be, in my heart I knew it was gone, and I could have thrown up I was so sick. I don’t feel that this time, so I keep holding on to the hope that we will find it.
Paul has accepted that it is gone. He has reviewed every possible scenario of what happened to it since he last had to get it out. He’s ready to expidite a new passport but to get it before we leave for Vancouver means he needs to apply today. He’s just waiting for me to acquiesce. I’m afraid this is one thing he’s going to have to do alone.
When we first discovered the passport was missing I was in the folder of important documents looking for something else, and ritualistically checked our passports. I didn’t get that sick feeling. All I felt was very deep annoyance. And my first thought was that I was not going to let this ruin my biannual trip to Canada. I’d go without him if I had to. I’d be sad that my father would be out all that money for Paul’s ticket, but what does make me sick is the thought of forking over the $200 it will take to get a new passport in a month.
As I was looking again last night, looking in the places I knew it couldn’t be, but looking and re-checking, stubbornly willing it there, I finally realized why I’m clinging so fiercely to the idea that it’s here, somewhere, and it’s up to us to look hard enough. I have to hold faith that it’ll show up, and we will be fine, because doing so also buoys my faith in this endless job search. If I give up on the forced optimism that this will work out, how many other things will crumble? Everything is so delicately tied together in the mantra that things will work out.
Today I just don’t know.