Tuesday, December 13, 2022

Unbroken Streak

There's a whole culture now around creating a "streak." What's your Wordle streak? How many days in a row have you done the Mini Crossword? Did you close your watch rings all the days this month?

I have a love-hate relationship with these streaks. I really like adding up all those numbers, but I also sometimes defiantly break my streaks so I'm not beholden to them. This week, I broke my Wordle streak but I hit a couple of high personal-high streaks - the crossword puzzle, Duolingo...

Somehow, all of these coming together THIS week felt...like something. Because it made me think of the streak I've never wanted to count - 3,288 days since Sam died. NINE years. Nine YEARS. It's more years than we knew him. It's more years than he was alive. 

And it's just not right. How did we get here? 

Our lives have changed so drastically in the last nine years. The Sam-shaped hole in our lives has softened, become a little pliable. We think of him, we talk about him, but the edges have blurred with time. There's less pain, and more ache. There are some memories that are still sharp, in full focus, and there are others that are cushioned by forgetfulness. The photos tend to bring smiles rather than tears. 

We have had no choice but to continue to put one foot in front of the other, to grow older each day, even though Sam did not. We have had no choice but to make new memories and new stories, even though Sam is not there to be in them. We have had no choice but to switch to the past tense, even though Sam is always so very present. 

Nine years have gone by, with us missing him each moment. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

This isn't 17

Dear Sammy,

Possibly, you’d want to be called Sam at this point. Let’s start over. 

Dear Sam,

Nope. You're always going to be Sammy to me.

Dear Sammy,

Today you’d be 17. You’re not here, of course, but if you were….it would be a big party, I’m sure. Or maybe a small one? Just a few friends over for a special dinner. 

You’d be deep in the throes of college prep, and filling out your application for Avodah. Would you be trying out for the musical? Or what about that French horn you might have asked for when you were 10, maybe you’d still be playing that. Or none of those. And you’d be doing something completely different. 

There is a lunar eclipse this morning - for your birthday. It’s a fairly rare phenomenon, one that isn’t going to happen again for three years. I’m sure I would have made everyone learn about the lunar eclipse and eat something moon-themed. You probably would have rolled your eyes but also humored me. Because that’s what 17 year olds do. 

But you’re not 17, are you?

You’re forever 8. 

And we forever miss you. 



2nd birthday: Best Shot Monday
3rd birthday: Birthday marathon
4th birthday: This is your birthday song
5th birthday: Five is a big number
6th birthday: Six is Awesome
7th birthday: Lucky Number Seven and Birthday Boy
8th birthday: Little Things
9th birthday: Birthdate
10th birthday: Just Not Okay
12th birthday: Dozen Donuts
13th birthday: I'm Sure
14th birthday: Because You Haven't Grown Up
15th birthday: Frozen
16th birthday: Sweet 16