Recently I was attempting to de-clutter a room in my house when I came upon a small box of old photos.
Uh oh, I said to myself. The box wasn’t marked so I had no idea what period of time these photos were from or who was captured on film.
I knew that taking the envelopes out and opening them would slow me down and perhaps even stop my project to get rid of stuff.
But still I went ahead.
I decided to roll the dice and walk down memory lane.
In general, I like to think of pictures as mini time capsules. For better or worse, they have captured a moment frozen in time.
Whether a husband, parent or grand parent, a child or a friend, pictures also quickly transport you to the moment their image was taken and remind you how very much you miss them.
If we didn’t love so deeply, we would not feel the loss of a special person so desperately.
I write today about the process of loss to let others know that they are not alone in their feelings of grief or their feelings of spiraling in and out of pain years after a loss may have occurred.
For even when someone leaves us, their energy remains in the things they left behind.
In this case, it is pictures but it could be many other personal items. Figuring out what to do with a deceased person’s belongings is an emotional process but that is what grief is: messy, unpredictable and bittersweet.
But isn’t it great that we still have the memories that we can share with other and pass along to those who never had the wonderful opportunity to meet the person we loved and lost?
I was making progress with my box of pictures until I came to one of my late husband that I had forgotten about. Here are some of my personal musings on the passage of time and losing a loved one:
There you are. Sitting and looking directly at the camera with a huge smile.
You look so healthy. So happy.
My goodness, when I think of you during this period of time, I realize how carefree everything was.
How carefree we were.
There you are. With your denim shirt and white turtleneck and beige cords. Your favorite outfit. Not my favorite outfit but you loved it and could care less how much fun people made of you and your turtleneck.
That day was memorable because you were telling so many jokes and everyone was laughing at them. You went from one funny joke to the next so effortlessly. I remember I laughed so hard I couldn’t get my breath.
You were definitely in some kind of comic zone.
Your timing was just as dramatic as your voice and your hand gestures as you set up the jokes and of course the surprising punchlines.
Which everyone waited for. Which everyone sat still for. Which everyone loved.
It was a day of friends and fun. A day we took for granted.
As though these days would always happen for us. Anytime we wanted.
As though the magic would never end.