BY SAMANTHA COSTA
My father died 12 years ago. TWELVE! Yikes. Recently, his best friend since childhood passed away. I wanted to attend the viewing and the funeral, but I was sick during that time. I thought about what it would have been like if I did go.
Would they even recognize me? I haven’t seen them in years. I felt sad for the family, but I didn’t feel much myself until later in the day. I realized it’s another connection to my dad that’s lost.
It’s gotten to the point now where material things of my dad's I took with me are starting to rust or fall apart, having to be thrown away. I refuse to get a new car. I’ve had mine since 2004. He was with me the day I bought it. He was the first and last person to wax it the old-fashioned way in 2005, which is probably why the paint is chipping off all these years later. I know I’ll be a mess when it stops running one day. Material things and people connected to him are slowly fading. The loss of his friend is a selfish sadness for me in that I’m upset because another connection to my father is gone.
(Photo: Samantha Costa's father, Santo "Sam" Costa waxing her car in 2005)
To those who are beginning to see the material items from their loved one start to wither away, don’t beat yourself up too much for crying over a broken glass, a rusted frying pan, photo that tears on the edge, or a piece of jewelry that breaks. They are just things, but they are our connection to them. You have to let yourself feel when it comes. Grief never goes away, but how you carry it changes. Ride the wave.
Samantha Costa is a 30-something living in Philadelphia. She's a former journalist who loves live music, writing, painting and binge-watching Netflix shows with her boyfriend. Her cat has an Instagram. She's still waiting for his Insta-fame to pay her bills. Connect with her on LinkedIn and/or follow her on Twitter.