I don’t actually like that song (don’t hate me!) but the phrase seemed appropriate.
Because my sister called me last night.
Okay, yeah, so I was dreaming…but nonetheless, she called. I was learning how to snowboard in a very bizarre wintry world, when my phone rang. I recognized her voice instantly and some more conscious part of me knew that this wasn’t supposed to be happening, that I had to keep her on the phone for as long as possible.
But we chatted – a real, legit, sisterly chat. I don’t remember about what and it wasn’t for very long, but she sounded happy – her voice sounded healthy.
Her voice. I’m not sure that there are strong enough words to express how much of a gift it was to hear her voice. To have my subconscious drag up some memory of it so that I could listen to her for even the briefest moment… There are pictures of her everywhere – on my computer, around my house, on the internet…I can see her whenever I want, but I can’t hear her. Not in the same way. I have one voicemail that I never deleted (thank goodness!) but really that’s it…
It’s sad to realize that you never stop losing someone. You lose the person in whatever way it happens but, over time, you continue to lose them. All the tiny details, the minutiae that made them whole, made them who they were, you can’t hold onto all of it as desperately as you try. So, it feels like they are truly slipping away…
Until, suddenly, you remember. You remember something and you realize it’s still there. Maybe you laugh. More likely you cry. But you haven’t lost them, not completely. And if your brain is being especially nice, you may even get to talk to them on the phone.