Such a simple question.
How old was he when he died?
I’m sitting in a coffee shop, connecting with a new friend. She’s just recently lost her partner. I had met her before he died, and was looking forward to getting to know her. Then he died.
She’s a nurse. I’m a nursing student. It gives us slightly different perspective on death and the process.
But now we both belong to the club that no one wants to. And we’re talking about her loss, we’re talking about my loss and then she asks:
“How old was he when he died?”
I had to think. I’m 42. It’s been almost 4 years since he died. So I was 38. He was 11 years older than me. Which made him 49.
I had told the joke may times about how he was going to be 50 before I turned 40 but then the fucker died at 49 and got the last laugh.
And I had to run through the process of how old was I. How long had it been. The whole gamut.
For a minute… I forgot how old he was when he died. Just for a minute.
How could I forget? WHY didn’t it just come to me as quickly as breathing?
I don’t know. But for a moment, I panicked because I couldn’t remember how old he was when he died.
He would have been 53 this year. But he is forever 49.