sixteen months after your death. To a place that was supposed to become our home. To a place where no one knew you. To a place where no one remembers you on the days that hurt the most. To a place that has more often felt like not home.
I guess the easy answer for not feeling home here is because you are not with us. Every meal holds an empty chair, in my mind. Every basket of laundry holds an absence of your clothes, in my mind. Every laugh around the table holds the silence of you not laughing, in my mind.
It's always the mind that goes first. But wherever we land this side of heaven, the emptiness and the silence and the absence will be our memory. Not theirs. In some way I feel immensely selfish about that. All my memories of you are just that--my memories. But sometimes it would be sweet, bittersweet, to hear someone else, just one, wax on about you and let me simply relish the sound.
It would not fill the gap. It would not heal the hurt. It would not, ever, never, replace the loss. But shared grief does remind you that this is not the way it should be. Shared grief is the reaching out of a hand to grasp the hand that otherwise remains empty. Shared grief is the acknowledgement that you were then and you are now.
Today is your day of celebration with the One who never forgets either you or me. That's exactly where I will rest today. Until I get to the real Home and rest is the activity of my eternity. Until then, James.