I don’t know what to say. I so much want to talk to you. What can I say?
So much of our relationship was spent in sharing time and space, in observation and just being together. The things I want to talk about require your response and that is gone.
I put up Christmas trees (that’s right – trees – plural). I pared the gift giving back quite a bit and it felt good. At Thanksgiving I had a turkey that had been raised free range up on a local mountain here. No one else particularly cared, but somehow had you been here I knew you would care.
I still suffer from what I can only call superstitious thinking. If events start lining up in any way that resemble that time around the 4th of July holiday, I feel panicky. I keep looking for a way to turn that around – to see the lining up of events in a familiar way as the foreshadow of good things and not bad.
New Years holiday has been the hardest. It makes me angry for the world to celebrate the fact that the earth has made is trip around the sun again. I would tack on the words “without you here” but the world doesn’t know that, think about that and you are in the past now for so many.
That infuriates me. Yet I have put others in the past too. My dad’s birthday was Jan. 7th. It is difficult to comprehend that he has been gone for 16 years in April. When I think of him it is not as a vibrant part of my life. That relationship was nothing like what I had with you.
I wonder why I even try to compare those things or why, for that matter, anyone does. It seems to clutter up the path we are on when we stop and try to figure out the nuances of human relationships. Perhaps it is better to be an obnoxious narcissist. But then if we were all narcissists no one would notice anyone at all!
Yet I am very self centered and selfish about a lot of things. I really wanted to see you grow and continue to mature. I wanted to see what you would do, where you would go, who you would influence. I so appreciated your take on the world and I have so few of your words now and they were all written at another time- to a different audience.
The house in Ohio is under renovation. You sister is having to endure the noise and dust. The new owners are preparing it for their parents to live in. Your apartment is being completely overhauled. Besides the noise and dirt I know it has been hard for your sister to see these things change. At the same time it may be good to see the change. Nothing stays the same for long.
She sent me pictures. When I saw them I reminded her of the time the rats came to visit after someone in your neighborhood began some sort of extermination program. I remember you passing one in in the stairway in the dark, and finding one you had exterminated under you kitchen sink. We had to laugh.
I try to remember the good things without the good things being exterminated with tears. It is me feeling sorry for myself and the world. We all suffered such a great loss with your death. The world doesn’t know it- never took time to notice – but it has suffered a great loss.
Perhaps, this year, I should write down the things I can remember. I wish you were here to correct them, set them straight. I am sure I have embellished them. But who would read them? Who would care? Or does that even matter?
For your dad and I – we do not pass a morning, a day, a night without thinking of you, grieving in ways big and small for you. I don’t expect you to know that.
I also grieve for your dad, for the insights he has gained and never got to share with you. You would have liked to hear them because they concerned you. I grieve for your sister who needs you as much as we do for your unconditional love and acceptance of us.
We carry you along with us in our hearts and minds every day. Every day.
Maybe time changes the physical things of this life, but never our love for you or one another.
The loss of a child continues to expand and touches all aspects of our lives (every minute of every day). So sorry.
He is missed and thought of more than you may realize. His influence has touched many. I go places and wonder, if he would enjoy them or see things and think, “Josh could do that but in his own unique way.” I have no words of comfort for you but please know that just because the world goes on, he is not forgotten.