Five Years On

How can it be? How can today already be the fifth anniversary of Patrick’s passing, when we still mourn him, when his voice still fills our ears, his letters fill our eyes, his drawings still encourage, his wine glasses still complete our evenings with their use? 

How can it be five years when so much remains unresolved, when family is more distant than ever, when travel is upended? How can it be when there’s still music to be played, wine to be savored, lessons to be learned, conversations to be enjoyed, trivial and important matters to be discussed? 

True, some things have diminished with time. There’s more resignation, more acceptance of this new reality, a greater willingness to move on in some regards, though we are not yet whole. Other wounds, related or merely coincidental, have been reopened, other blows struck.

Still, there is hope.  Despite the prospects of a larger war in Eurasia, a denial of science here at home, a massive surge of hatred and anger and violence everywhere,  there is hope. It is found in small things, like my grandson’s hand in mine, and my niece’s growth into adulthood, and the rewards of teaching, and the company of friends. Even now, as I write this I’m back in a rally car, getting ready for another weekend of competition, just as I did when Patrick was alive.

There is hope. Coupled with the memories of our time with Patrick, and his subsequent legacy,  we can push on, ready now to embrace the future.

It has been five years since Patrick ended his life. Soon it will be ten, then twenty,  fifty, a hundred. His memory will fill those future decades just as they have the past half.