I accidentally woke my grandfather from a nap when I went to visit him. I brought my favorite burger with me to eat for a late lunch. We went into the living room and started our silent chess game of who will make the first vocal move? I’ve played him and won this game for years.
I eat my burger without saying a word and finally he jokes, asking if it’s “that same” burger place. I laugh and say of course it is, because I am a creature of habit. I tell him they screwed up my order. That’s the second time in a year. He asks how they screwed it up. I say, they screwed it up. He accepts my non-answer answer.
He mentions how he read in the paper that suicide is up 30% in the nation and he didn’t realize what a problem it was. It’s his way of acknowledging my work and also accepting that it is okay that it happened to us, too. We often mean more than what our words say. It’s just the way we’ve always communicated with one another.
I tell him it’s even higher in youth, rising 70% over the past 10 years. We talk a little about my work. He asks if I get a company car since I travel so much or if I get mileage. Mileage, I say simply. He nods his head. He asks me how long I stayed at Nanny’s service. I tell him 45 minutes. He said, it was a beautiful service, wasn’t it?” I say yes. He asks if I made it to my friends service and I tell him yes, but I was a bit late. He nods.
Two funerals in one day. Two losses in twenty-four hours. It’s been a long and emotionally exhausting few weeks. I’m finally starting to feel like myself again. Myself, seems odd that we expect to return to normal after experiencing such abrupt changes in such a short amount of time. I feel like sometimes we put too much stock in normal.
If only we could be abnormal for just awhile when life calls for it most. If only.
I miss them dearly.