Something awful happens. One of those terrible, life altering losses that are supposed to happen to other people. The phone call that fractures everything. The numb gives way to crushing grief that turns into perpetual sadness that eases into mostly something bearable. Something makes it okay to wake up. Okay to smile, or laugh, or feel a bit normal. Even if "it"never quite goes away. There are still days when you have to choose to put one foot in front of the other, to take a breath and another and another. Days like tomorrow.
I heard someone say that "closure" is a television word. Something that doesn't exist. Losing someone you love isn't something from which you recover. It is something you learn to live with.... in an altered, strange world that looks, smells, and keeps on spinning, just like before. It is you who is different, not the world.
Six years of missing. Of wishing I had made more phone calls, had more conversations, been less judgmental, enjoyed the moment more. I wish that I could say that living through it had made me into a better person. Someone who appreciates what is important, truly important in this life, but I don't know that it is true. The cause did not engender some kind of beautiful effect. No metamorphosis into a higher level of being.
Mostly, I'm grateful to have known him. Grateful that when the bottom fell out, the closeness of our family kept us from falling headlong into the pit. Grateful that my parents gave us a childhood filled with love and togetherness and things that can't be traded for something out of a wallet. I'm still me, no better than before, but different all the same.
6 months ago