I feel like I’m doing something wrong

4 Apr

By letting life go on.

I mean, Topher’s gone. Not here. Not going to be here ever again. And suddenly all the tiny little conversations I had with him have taken on a whole new importance, just like the stupid inside jokes with Liz are now something I can never forget (“upstairs to the library”??? “You gotta see it to believe it”??? I still don’t know why it was so funny at the time). 

But I’m thinking about other things, just like everyone eventually does when they lose someone. Just like everyone will when I eventually go (hopefully not for many years, but this weekend was a reminder there’s no guarantee of that). The world doesn’t stop turning just because one person is gone.

There are still tests to take and papers to be written. Still laughing to be done. Still applications to send out and rent to be paid and life to be lived.

I keep feeling guilty for making jokes or forgetting for an hour or two. I feel guilty for worrying about things that are nowhere near as important as the death of a kid three days after his 18th birthday.

But I know I’ll never forget Topher. I can’t. And just like Liz is still in my head almost every day a year and a half later, he’s never going to be gone. One of the Camp Reed memories I was considering sharing during stump time next year can’t be used because it’s too emotional now, but it’s always going to be in the back of my head.

So life will go on. And mine won’t change, because we weren’t close enough for it to change. But it will always have had that ripple in it from Topher showing up, and then leaving too early. And every time he peeks around the corner of some memory in the back of my head, I’ll know that it’s okay to stop hurting, as long as you keep on remembering.

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