How many people have gotten older and forgotten about the things they hoped for and dreamed about when they were young? Or given up without ever taking a chance, or settled in life because it’s easier, or they’re scared, or whatever other excuses? How many people need a reminder of who they once were?
Whoever said it got easier with time was wrong, death never got easier. The pain dulls around your heart, numbing the spot the deceased inhabited in your chest—but it was never easier. Loss was still loss—a physical pain, a hurt that reaches deep inside you and smothers your soul, forever indenting their memory.
Did you ever think about all of the nights you lived through and can’t remember? The ones that were so mundane your brain just didn’t bother to record them. Hundreds, maybe thousands of nights come and go without being preserved by our memory. Does that ever freak you out? Like maybe your mind recorded all of the wrong nights?
When I was a child, a volcano erupted unexpectedly in Iceland, burying a small town at the foot of its cone. All the children in the town were in school at the time, and they all perished. The parents sent their sons and daughters out the door that morning, same as they always did, and never saw them again. I remember my mother being profoundly moved by that tragedy. She always made sure that the last words we had in the morning were loving ones. That cannot always have been easy, but my memory is that she usually succeeded.