Will I remember the sound of her voice? That was one of my fears when my sister died. Would I forget what her voice sounds like? And I can remember trying to sear into my brain things she would say, frantically memorizing the right intonation… But I don’t know if I remember what she sounds like…

Death has a way of triggering all sorts of things. Feelings you can’t explain. Thoughts you can’t trace. Decisions you can’t make. Memories you can’t hold on to. It has a way of stopping life. And suddenly all you have is this moment… and you’re stuck… and everything before – every smile, every word, every life-changing second – is threatening to leave you, is slipping away… and everything else, everything after, is just moving on. But you’re stuck. You’re just stuck trying to hold on to as much as possible.

Standing in my closet, I found myself wondering if I will remember his piercing eyes? Will I remember his stories? Will I remember to use his wisdom? Should I wear black? Do people wear mourning colors anymore? Does it even matter since life is not stopping long enough to let me cry? Will I remember to tell my children about my grandfather? I don’t know… But in this moment, black seems appropriate.

Papa, 6/20/1920 – 3/21/2014

~that’s life… in no particular order

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