How is this even real? The weight of it seems incomprehensible, yet somehow it’s true. I’ll never again get to hug her neck, belly laugh with her, seek her advice when I need it, go to an Astros game together, or see that smile that lights up a room. You know life is fragile and precious, but until someone you love is suddenly taken away, you don’t grasp the magnitude of it all. When it’s someone else’s aunt, mother, daughter, sister, friend, it’s sad and maybe even tragic, but when she’s your person, it rips your heart open, leaving you gasping for air, unable to believe that she’s really gone. At first, there’s shock and disbelief, a numbness that comes over you. Then the reality of everything settles in on your chest, bringing with it a heaviness you can’t really understand. A dark cloud follows you everywhere, tears falling as rain from your eyes. You try to push the feelings aside and do what you have to do, but your heart’s not really into it and your mind’s somewhere else, a vacant look in your eyes.
I know that as much as I’m hurting, it can’t even compare to the pain that Uncle Mike and Jason are feeling, losing their wife and mom, or how her sisters and brother and parents are feeling. Their whole world has just shattered. I can’t even imagine what that feels like. A month ago, Kathy was healthy and fine, and now she’s gone. This awful virus that has wrecked millions of lives has claimed another one. It’s not fair. She didn’t deserve this. She had so much life left in her, so much left to offer the world.
As I sit here, alone, halfway around the world, all I want to do is be with my family. While I know there’s nothing I can do to bring her back and nothing I can do to make it better, I wish I could cry with them, hug them, spend time with them, and let them know I love them. When someone dies, you are more aware of the importance of family and togetherness. In these current times, it’s much harder to be away from home. I hope they know how much I love them and wish I could be with them.