The Memories Remain

We lost someone in my family back in December.
It wasn’t a surprise.
They’d known it was coming for a long time.
That didn’t mean that there wasn’t pain and a sense of loss when she passed on.
Death is never easy, at least not for the survivors.
You’re left with an empty spot inside, and a phantom pain that keeps trying to fill it.

After having lost someone else very close to me a few years ago, I’ve been doing my damnedest to avoid death at all costs.
I’m not pleased with death at all.
Death is greedy.
All it does is take, take, take, and it never gives anything back.
(Please don’t reply with the ‘circle of life’ rhetoric, telling me that they return to the Earth whence they came. That just means that death is a litterbug too, leaving nature and man to pick up after it)

When I found out that her end was drawing near my immediate and stubbornly held reaction was that she would beat it.
She’d done it before and would do it again.
I kept telling myself that, no matter how much worse it got.
And it didn’t get better.

She was adamant about one thing; no funeral or wake.
She didn’t want people to be sad, all she wanted was a party.
Not sad…that’s a tall order.
A party, however, that was doable.
That party was this past weekend.
Over 400 people showed up to say goodbye to her.
It was amazing to see that kind of outpouring for one person.

I had been waiting for this event as a piece of closure.
Being part of the laughter and tears made me realize something.
It’s not about closure.
Not at all.
That part of our lives isn’t over, we’re just merely in transition.
We’ll have to adjust to not seeing her or talking to her.
She’ll still be part of our lives, in memories and in stories.
We’ll all be able to carry that with us for the rest of our days.
Until it’s time for our memories and stories to be shared.
And, maybe, just maybe, some of those stories will have her in them as well.

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