It has been fourteen years and six months since we last saw him. I find myself staring at old photographs strewn all over the house in various forms. Albums, frames and random pictures. It is a little awkward because I don’t want to be found staring at the man in the picture who we will never see again. We momentarily forget about him as we go about the business of living our lives, eating breakfast, going to school, looking for jobs, growing up, learning to live without him.
Yet every so often, he comes back. His books that have his name written on them in fading ink, the shoes he wore the day he took you for your first swim, the chair he sat on when you had the flu and lovingly carried you till you fell asleep, the book he bought you where you wrote your first words, the last picture you took hanging on the chimney wall in a huge golden frame, from where he quietly smiles at you. He comes back through these things. These mundane objects that seem to have hidden pieces of him. Sometimes its as though if I stare at them enough, if I use them enough, if I treasure them enough, just maybe he’ll really come back. In the flesh.
But even as I think this, I know he is not returning. The journey he took does not give us the privilege of calling him back when we so please. It is of no return. Maybe when our day finally comes we will join him. For now we will remember the moments we spent with him through these quiet mundane objects.
Books, shoes, chairs and photographs.
God be with you till we meet again.