Missing someone is a fragile feeling. Cracks at a touch. It is intense at first. Eventually the pain lessens; replaced by missing bouts.
“At first” though could be different time periods for different people. Depending on how close a relationship you had with that person. The intensity of contact prior to the person’s departure. The regrets you have. Things you wish you’d done. Things you wish you’d said. Or not done; and not said.
When my friend, B went home to his final rest in heaven (one year tomorrow), the void he left was greater than I’d expected. He’d asked me if I would be part of his closer group that he’d update outside of his normal e-mail circulation, for SOS prayer. Like when he was in pain and couldn’t get relief. Couldn’t sleep. Couldn’t move his bowels… So there was a steady stream of updates. When that stopped, the silence was deafening. It left a void beyond what I expected.
What made the memory more difficult was what happened on what would be the last time I saw him. A friend, S and I wheeled him out of the hospital ward, fentanyl drip and all, to get some air. He wanted tau huay chwee (soya bean milk). So we wheeled him to the “Jollibean” counter but it was closed! 😮
On the way back to the room, we passed a convenience store and he wanted The New Paper (TNP). Happy to be able to get what he wanted, I ran into the store to get him his TNP. Alas!, they were out too!! 😮
I hadn’t felt sadder… in the longest time. 😦 I couldn’t help do the small things to cheer him, even if it were for a fleeting moment. 😦
B was discharged the day after that and S and I decided to go visit him at home the following day. We drove to get “Jollibean” tau huay chwee and were making our way to his home when we received a call that he was being rushed back to hospital, just after one night at home. It was his last time at home….
… So ….
… while the void gets filled up with happier memories with time (cliched as this sounds, it’s true), there will be lightning bolts of missing bouts.
For me, the bolt is “Jollibean”. It was what I didn’t get to do for him.