An entry on a WTF social media site raged against the circumstance of an elderly gentleman being taken advantage of by a building contractor. Run of the mill for this site but in this case I know the gentleman.
Maybe “know” is a misnomer since we haven’t really been in touch for twenty years or so which doesn’t in any way demean the close family/friend ties we had and my fondness for the family. Anyway, as I read the article, I wondered where his wife was and with the advent of our search- ability society, I soon found her obituary. She died a year and a half ago.
I was sad to find out that she’s dead. I’m old enough to be having past colleagues, friends, family and my contemporaries die. Death is a fact of life and it’s acknowledging that empty space that not only forces us to somehow fill it with memories, grief, anger, whatever; but also forces us to touch the edges of our own mortality.
Someone hurt me years ago in a life changing way. For decades I kind of wondered what it would be like to face him but I never did. Years went by and what was anger on my part turned to indifference and I marched ahead with my here and now.
Again, with social media searches and yes, creeping, I discovered he died five years ago. I discovered that he had a family and productive life and that was it. That was it for me. I no longer had to even consider the “what if” confronting him would bring, and it closed the closet door that allowed the occasional monster to reach out towards me from all those years ago.
Closure. I found out you’re dead and sometimes I feel sadness, fondness, memories; and sometimes just relief.