Are you one of the unfortunate humans who walk the earth having experienced a significant loss? I’m talking about a loss; a close family member, a best friend, a parent, son, daughter, etc… You get it.
One aspect of loss that never ceases to amaze me is that SO many people become your “best friend” when life goes awry. Everyone cares. Everyone shares. Every. Single. Person.
Then, just as quickly as “those” people appear, they disappear.
This is the norm. I know I’ve been that person a time or two.
When someone passes, we all want to feel a connection to that person, whether it’s through true friendship, acquaintanceship, a family member, or one conversation we had with the deceased. We want to feel as though we KNEW them, that whatever time we had with them was meaningful. It’s the human condition, to want to be a part of the village, no matter how large or small that village may be.
My sister passed away just about a year and one month ago to the day. During that time, I must confess, it was lovely being the recipient of ample amounts of much-needed affection from family, friends and strangers alike. It was therapeutic to share in the memories of her life with others who knew her, her husband, and her children, or even simply knew of her and her story. And for a couple months after her passing, it was heart warming to still receive phone calls and texts, just “those” people checking in.
Today, most of “those” communications have fallen silent, albeit “the few.”
And that is okay. EVERY life moves forward, and as much as I want to freeze those precious moments, those nostalgic conversations, those times where our village was strong, saluting one of the best of us, relishing in her memory, that’s simply not the reality of today.
And that is okay.
I know that there are grievers out there who harbor resentment towards “those” people who have gone silent. If you are one of those grievers, I say, forgive them. They got you through an incredibly trying time. Even if they didn’t know the deceased in the way you knew them, or even if they did, they were there. It’s only natural that, eventually, people will move on, assuming you are moving forward as well. Or perhaps they don’t WANT to bring up your loved one for fear of bringing hard memories to the surface. Or perhaps they have pushed that difficult time to the back of their minds. It was likely hard on them too. As we all know, all people grieve differently.
For you, dear grievers, you too have brought new thoughts forward, but the loss of THAT person is never far from the front of your mind. And that, too, is okay. That loss will probably remain in the front of your mind for a while, maybe forever.
That. Is. Okay.
Remember them, and remember them hard. Remember their laughter, their tears, their voice, their virtues. Remember the good times, the funny times, the sad times, the times you can’t remember. Remember your love for them. Remember how they moved you. Remember the person they helped you become. Remember the impact they had in your life.
To “those” people, those who have gone silent, we thank you for being there for us when we needed you. Simply remember those of us who loved them best who are still suffering, trying to find a reason without them. Help us to remember the reason we grieve. It may have been over a year, perhaps more, but to us, it feels like yesterday. Each memory of them is still so fresh in our minds, it’s as though we can feel them, smell them, hear their voice as if they are sitting next to us. Please don’t forget about us. Even just a smile emoji helps.
To “the few,” you know who you are, the ones who still call, text, email, send a simple photo. Thank you. You haven’t forgotten us. You haven’t forgotten THEM. YOU are still there, firm in your faith and friendship. Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts.
And so, dear grievers, thank the ones who stayed, forgive the ones who didn’t, and remember, always remember, the ones who are, forever, a memory.