I made dinner for my friend tonight. Our boys played and we sat at the kitchen table and talked of her new life. The one without her husband.
It overwhelmed me when I walked through their front door. Overwhelmed me with tears. Took my breath away.
"You know what I am gonna miss?" she asked, "The way he drank a coke. It never seemed to touch his lips. I always asked him how he did it. I am gonna miss seeing that."
"You know what I will miss?" I said, "The flicker in his eyes when he smiled at me. He was genuine. So sincere. Just a little flicker that I would miss if I weren't paying attention."
"You know what else? The way his hand felt. The grooves." she said.
"It really is the small things, huh?" I asked. "The small details. The small things that seem silly. That is what we miss when someone is gone. Nothing big. Just the small things."
We cried. We laughed. We cried some more. We tried to make sense of the senseless things. We talked of the future. We talked of the past. We talked of a magical rewind button. We talked of what ifs. And of many, many small things.
Pay attention my friends. The small things are what matter. The details that are easy to overlook. The moments that seem too silly to make note of. That is the living that one misses. That is the thing that makes one ache to the bone, knowing that the hum will not be heard. The tap of the foot that shook the table will not be felt. The cold feet in the night. Seeing the keys tossed on the table. The movement of the hands.