When I opened my eyes, the world didn’t look different. The pillow that was tucked beneath my head was still there. The white ceiling in eyesight hadn’t gotten up and walked away.
Nor did the clutter that filled the same, slightly dulled tan wooden floors located below my arm, dangling from the mattress. Your clothes still hang in the closet of the room next door where you used to sleep; waiting for you to come back and show them around the town.
Not much was left of your body when they carried you away. Your head tilted with the same poise that carried your pride through rooms. A mouth slightly parted, like the words that once lived there. The warmth of your skin, with them too, was no longer there.
I lay in this bed, on the morning of your last, wondering what the final thought you had was before your eyes closed for the last time. I see the pictures on my wall, they have not moved. The still air moves in and out of my lungs. I am breathing, I am hearing, I am seeing. None of this has changed.
But, then there is the knowing. Knowing your eyes will no longer gleam in greetings with mine. Your voice can only be found in home videos, or through the memories of your family.You aren’t here to wake up and begin your days in a long hot shower, or end them with a honeycomb dripping down your shirt watching tv after a long day of work. We don’t get to talk about the weather or our rough days, sitting on the couch. You aren’t going to be here to watch your family grow and change through every milestone. The vacation you planned to take will never come to fruition.
But everything else still stands.
One of the strangest realization’s of life is that the death of a loved one doesn’t kill you. But, the feeling, it must be the closest sensation to death available to the living.
The transition tests you in different ways. For some, there comes a period of numb before the pain, others anger. There will be outrageous highs and helpless lows. And then, one day, you will reach a point where you realize: life goes on. You continue to put one foot in front of the other because you can- and any other action would slowly morph from a comfortable idea to a wasteful choice.
I miss you so much. There isn’t an hour that goes by where you haven’t been on my mind, even if just for a moment. I send you love each time.
When I recall all of the amazing accomplishments you leave behind, I’m still impressed. When I think of your presence, I come closer and closer to a smile than before. You deserve to be remembered as you were. I will always see you with unmatchable strength grounded in pure tenderness.
Please continue to watch over us the way you did when you were here. We will need your strength and courage in the days to come. And take good care of heaven for us. I know you wouldn’t be up there right now if you weren’t needed for something greater.
Thanks for always being unmistakably you. Until we meet again.