I turned 51 today. I don’t feel special because it’s my birthday. I feel nothing. I feel nothing about most things in life. Things that used to matter don’t matter anymore. I am finally feeling a little bit of that anger people talk about. I guess it’s a stage of grief, but none of this seems to come in neat sequential stages. Grief just comes when it wants to and demands to come. I haven’t been angry at the usual things. I’m not angry at you, or God or the helicopter pilots… I am simply angry because my child has been reduced to a series of memories. That’s all I have of you. A couple of items, photos and memories; all wonderful things, but memories pale in comparison to the real you. You brightened every room you entered. You were larger than life, fun-loving and driven to make everyone around you laugh. You were the only one I connected with in our goofy way. We found the same things funny, the same things drove us crazy and we had a way of just looking at each other and knowing what the other was thinking. I have that with nobody but you. Who will I be silly with? Who will get me? Your disappearance has left such a hole in my heart and in my life. It’s a space that cannot be filled because it’s your space, and a constant reminder of your absence. How can you be just a memory? It makes no sense because you are so much more than that. It’s not fair! I want to punch something, scream or run until I can’t run any more. You are more than a memory, Jake. You will always live as long as I live. You are the missing part of me. You will never be just a memory!

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