10.18.19 to 5.18.20

Two nights ago, it finally hit your oldest granddaughter that you are not here. That no matter how many times someone assures her that you’re just on the other side, you’re here in spirit, you’re always watching . . . She will never see you again in this life.

It kept her up that night. We talked about how excited you were when she was born and about how she became the light of your life. No one was smarter, prettier, or more important to you than Lily. But I still couldn’t take away her sadness or her despair that her grandpa is gone.

How do I comfort someone who mourns the person I mourn?

I showed her my hands, the freckles on my arms, the shape of my eyes. I told her to look at her own eyes, at the blue that isn’t the exact shade as yours, but complementary in that the color comes from the same palette. To watch her little sister’s mischievousness and propensity for getting into good-natured trouble.

“That,” I told her, “is how we find Grandpa.”

More than any picture, memory, story I could write, or affirmation that your spirit is close, seeing you in ourselves and in each other is how we find you again.

It’s how we keep you with us.