I hope you don’t mind that I’m writing to you. But I have been thinking about our conversation and the death of your brother, and the great sadness that you must be feeling.
I lost my wife twenty years ago, and sometimes I feel as if I have lived without her for a decade, and sometimes I feel as though I lost her just a minute before.
I write lost, but I have grown to hate that expression. She was not a set of keys or a hat. Losing her is the equivalent of saying that I have misplaced my lungs.
I know you understand what I mean; I can see it in your face. There comes a time when the non-grievers go back to life, even some of the grievers, and you’re left trying to comprehend the incomprehensible.
What’s the point in living on past the point when those we have loved have left us? And how can we ever forgive ourselves for letting them go? Without Elena in the world, time did not exist. A world without time is a terrible thing. There is no certainty. Days could move quickly or slowly, or not at all. The laws of the universe have been tinkered with, and you are blindly wheeling.
But you know this already.
You know that you must hold on to any laws that you can find.
I love my son, and he is the law that cannot be tinkered with. Love of the things that make you happy is steady too – books, words, music, art – these are lights that reappear in a broken universe.
You say that the ocean is the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen, and the thing that terrifies you the most. You’ve described how it was for me to fall in love with Elena. Perhaps all things that are worthwhile are terrifying?
Go back to the ocean. It’s a part of you, and so is Cal.