I have been reading a book that explores, among other things, the concept of time. Incidentally, I am also preparing to embark on a journey that I know will distort time. My mother and I will be traveling to Colorado to attend her father’s memorial service.
Something I have noticed is that death seems to slow time for those who suffer loss. Maybe it’s because we become more aware in the days following the death of a loved one, and maybe it’s because we simply slow down. Either way, I have noticed that the time immediately following a loss or tragedy seems to become a precious capsule to be cherished.
I remember the time surrounding a life threatening surgery my Dad underwent several years ago. The trip to Florida, the night preceding the surgery, and the moments just before he was wheeled into surgery (in particular) are etched into my brain. The weeks, days, and months just before my father’s death are even more clear in my mind. And I suspect this weekend will become burned into my memory just as clearly.
I was not close to my grandfather, but my relationship with my mother will make this weekend one of those time-bent weekends. We will be spending hours in airports and on an airplane together. Then we will spend a weekend focused on the life and death of the primary man in my mother’s life. Time will slow and, at times, stand still.
I know these moments frozen in time will become a pat of our life stories. So I am ready. I am ready to take in the stories, feel the agony of loss and the joy of reminiscence, and enjoy the time with my mother. And I am grateful that time bends to make these times stand out in our memories.