In July, I published a Part I post suggesting that a Part II would follow soon. Immediately after publishing Part I, my dear friend went to the hospital to undergo her second double lung transplant. Tragically, she did not survive the procedure. Junwen and I were in Singapore at the time, and I felt my life turn upside-down. Everything felt meaningless, and posting a happy go-lucky Part II blog post felt so inappropriate and foreign. I had the same response when my Grandpa died three years ago…That time, I was in Japan when I got the news. I had been writing blog entries about the country and my experiences there, but once again, these writings all felt meaningless, empty, and shallow.
Both deaths put a halt to my writing, and I imagined re-entering the blogosphere by writing beautiful tributes to these special people. But I never did…In both cases, it was something I couldn’t bring myself to do. I’m still figuring out why it was/is so hard…Maybe it feels too sacred? When I’m stressed, I tend to process things by talking it out or writing it out. When it came to this type of grief, I shunned writing. For both Grandpa and for Kate, I managed to write eulogies that seemed to take every bit of my creative spirit such that a door was closed after completion. I gave Grandpa’s eulogy at his funeral. A mutual friend of Kate’s read the one I wrote for her at the memorial service (since I was still in Singapore). Afterwards, the topic felt untouchable. I imagined expounding on Grandpa’s eulogy in my blog, trying to express to the world what an amazing man he was…Maybe internally I felt that I could never do an adequate job, that I would never really express who he truly was properly, and so I never made the attempt. I relived those feelings with the loss of Kate…I imagined re-entering the blogosphere by picking up my pen to write a beautiful memorial about who she was and what she meant to me. I imagined putting down the words, thoughts, and feelings that tumbled out with my tears and landed in Junwen’s hands while we walked under the muggy Singapore sky…Thoughts of death, thoughts of the meaning of life—or rather, the lack of meaning I felt, feelings of being adrift in an endless sea…But it was something I just could never approach.
It was the anniversary of Grandpa’s passing in November, when I started writing this post (now over a month ago). Three years have passed…I felt so weepy on the anniversary, but didn’t realize that the anniversary was the cause of my emotions until my mom posted about it on Facebook. I got to thinking, “Maybe now I can post something…maybe it’s enough just to post the eulogy I had written back then.” Then I still didn’t, because I thought, “Well, at least I need to include pictures…” Now it is the beginning of the new year…2018…Hopefully a much better year. Do I start it out with eulogies? I think I will…The New Year is a time we both recall the past as well as look forward to the future. Both Grandpa and Kate have left lasting footprints on my soul that have directed me into becoming a better person…What better way to begin the new year than to remember with gladness such beautiful people?
I will include links here once I have completed those posts, which will be published separately.