I remember the day he died. It started out pretty ordinary, although I can’t remember what I ate for breakfast. I watched TV and talked with my friends over the internet, filling my time with unimportant things. Then I got a phone call. I knew it from the moment I answered. For a while no one said anything, and then just a whispered “he’s gone,”.
I’d spent so long trying to imagine what it would be like without him- we knew that he was dying- but this was an unimaginable kind of pain. It sucked the air from my lungs and the thoughts from my head. I felt empty. I was empty without him.
I didn’t cry, not right away. It didn’t feel real at first. How can a person be there one minute and not the next? I spent most of the afternoon staring off into space because there was nothing else I could do.
That night I tried to call him. I didn’t even think about it; it was routine. Everything hit me when he didn’t answer like a wrecking ball through my heart and then the tears came. A tear for all the conversations we’d never have, for all the sunsets he wouldn’t see and moments he’d miss. Tears just trying to fill the emptiness inside me.
That was six years ago and things are so different now. Its strange doing all the things he never had the chance to; I graduated, soon I’ll be moving out and someday I want to travel. There are days when everything is going right and it doesn’t hurt as much. I’ve done such amazing things and there’s such much more to come. Sometimes I can think about him and smile because I was privileged enough to spent time with him. It hurt so much to lose him, but I wouldn’t trade it for him never being a part of my life.
Then there are sometimes when the pain is as fresh as the unanswered call. It rips through me and I crumble. In those moments, it feels like nothing will ever be okay again, but it will be. After the tears are cried, the sun will rise on a new day. In a way those moments lost in darkness, make me appreciate the light that little bit more.
“So it’s true, when all is said and done, grief is the price we pay for love.”
― E.A. Bucchianeri