I loved her.
She was dear to me.
She was a good friend.
To know her was so love her.
She was an amazing person.
I caught myself doing this and was kind of like, WTF?
Of course I still LOVE her. Present tense. And of course she IS still dear to me. Present tense. She will always be a great friend and an amazing person. Those are just facts that go on and on ad infinitum.
FUCK THE PAST TENSE.
I’m trying hard to remember a specific memory about Patty. Truth is, after I left that job, we didn’t spend a ton of time together. But that didn’t matter much. We had a bond and a very deep mutual affection. Like family you don’t see for many years because they live far off.
See, I did it again.
We still HAVE a bond and deep mutual affection. Death does not get to put that in the past tense.
Death, that fucking fucker.
Anyway, the last time I saw Patty was when I was on maternity leave with Emily. We went out to lunch. I was still struggling with nursing Em and I sat there, scrunched up in this booth, trying to get Emily to pay attention to my boob and latch. But Em was fussy. Patty held her patiently while I ate and the two of them made a love connection. Patty loved babies. She never had any, but she sure loved them and never was bitter or begrudging that other people had babies and she didn’t.
I guess it was her calm energy and sweet spirit Emily responded to that day.
We stayed in touch on Facebook and email, me and Patty. Then we fell out of touch for about a year. Then she died.
I didn’t know she was sick. Turns out a lot of people didn’t know she was sick. I think she tried to keep it private, and tried to protect people from the ravages of her illness. She wasn’t one to make a fuss or draw attention to herself.
She was one of the best of the best.
Um yeah. Fuck you death. She still IS one of the best of the best. Present fucking tense.
I may not believe in God as such, but I very much believe in Love. And I believe Love doesn’t die.
So, I’ve got to focus really hard on not letting that black hole suck up my present tense and turn it into the past. Because that would be the real loss.