I took the dogs to the mountains today. It was the first time I'd been there since you died. I didn't expect the usual trails to make me sad, but they did, because you and I walked them together so many times.
How strange that the ground is frozen hard, that the paths I walked today are covered in snow that you will never see, never play in, never build dream castles and hideaways from. How is it that you do not know snow, but you do know death?
How is it that the world goes on and on, and I cannot leave the moment that I said good-bye to you?
And it's not just snow that you'll never experience, but breath and sun and night and grass. The bristling softness of your dog-brothers' fur. Your father's arms. My skin against yours.
We had plans for you. You were supposed to keep us up nights, to learn to laugh, to walk. We were supposed to be curly-haired together. You were supposed to snuggle with you daddy at night, to giggle at the silly faces he'd make.You were supposed to make fun of our quaintness as we grew old and wrinkled.
It seems impossible that you've traveled the expanse from life to death before us.
The sun seems too bright, the snow too pristine for these feelings I have. How can the world look so beautiful, but my chest feel so hollow?
It's a curious dichotomy:
In the midst of deepest pain,
despite death, hope
and Love --
love that will not fail
Though I feel that I am drowning in sorrow, I feel sure that I will not be lost. When I feel alone, I am surrounded. Although death has claimed you, I cannot feel sad because you are where I long to be, safe in His arms.
I miss you. I missed you on my walk today -- my walk that should have been our walk, you safe inside me, me safe from the knowledge of how fast, how silently everything can go wrong.
I cannot stop missing you. I don't think I will ever stop missing you.
The story does not end here. I am sure of this, even while I am sure of nothing else. The final word on the final page of the Story that weaves through all stories is hope.
I can't help but trust in that.