I do a fairly good job of blocking the tragedy of you from my immediate thoughts. This is good, because otherwise I’d never manage to do anything but sit in a dark room and trudge through painful memories. But every once in awhile, something jogs my memory. Sometimes a person walks past me and the scent of the cologne you used to wear lingers in the air. Once in awhile, I’ll catch a glimpse of a bright yellow car zooming past in my peripheral vision. Rarely, the song playing on the radio when I screamed out my grief as Mom called me to tell me that CPR was stopped plays once again in the car. I’ll see a face in an advertisement or brush past a blond stranger in a black leather jacket and then it all comes flooding back. My stomach sinks like a stone, a cold iron band compresses my chest, and all the anger and the grief and the fear and the loss and the senselessness rage through my head. All I can do is stop, close my eyes, force air into my lungs, and remember. And when I remember all I wonder is how in the world I ever managed to put you out of my head for even a second. I often meander through my day doing whatever it is that needs to be done. I have good days and I have bad days but even in my best moments there is something missing. It is like the difference between a dark chocolate caramel topped with sea salt and a regular old dark chocolate caramel. The caramel is good by itself but that little pinch of salt elevates it, adds to it, and makes the moment more singularly sweet. In these moments of grief I figure out exactly what is wrong. You are the salt in my life. Without you, even the best of experiences are only “good enough.”
I guess this is what it means to lose someone. I guess this is what it means to lose you.
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