Leif loved parties and New Years Eve celebrations. This is our third New Years Eve since he died, and the holidays have brought so many memories of him. I miss him terribly.
To compound the feeling, I received a junk email from "him" at two of my email addresses. No message, just a junk link to a website that would undoubtedly have infected my account. And odder still, the message came from an email address of his that I had closed (or at least went through the process to close) over two years ago. I could see that the message also went to others in his contact list, and they probably found it startling to see an email from him.
I found that both his Hotmail accounts were still open. despite the fact that Microsoft says they will disable the account if a person doesn't log in for 270 days, and despite the fact that I had gone through a process to close them. I tried again and had difficulties. I hope I succeeded in getting the two accounts closed this time. I don't want them sending out junk that will be passed on by others when they click a link to see what it is, nor do I want people getting a shock when they see email from "Leif Garretson."
Yet even now, closing an account of his still feels like I am doing something I shouldn't, taking away something that was his, taking away yet another little piece of the identity he crafted, as though there is less of him left in this world. I know that's silly, and I know I have to do it, but the feeling is still there.
The "brave new world" we live in creates situations that would never have happened years ago, before the internet, before email, before social media. I doubt that Leif ever considered what would happen to all his accounts when he died, or whether anyone would have to deal with them.
Mail still comes for him, too, from mailing lists he was on, from Mazda, for instance, and Geico. I wonder how many years past his death we will still find envelopes in the mail addressed to him at our address, since he once lived here.
Other things linger on. I received two phone calls concerning an old account of his in the past two days. When are things really settled? When will I finally have taken care of all his belongings?
I go to the garage and see his bicycle hanging up. I go to my office and remember that once it was his. I enter the guest room and remember that once he slept there.
I think of New Years and know I won't see him or get a "Happy New Year, Mom" text from him on my phone. Now there are no new years for him.
Music still makes me think of him and cry.
Most days I'm all right. Most days I am finding more ambition and motivation than I've had since he died. Most days I am happy, or at least not unhappy. Sometimes I find joy, with my grandchildren, with Peter W.
And some days, some times, I am sad and miss Leif so.
This is a photo I found on an old cell phone Leif had. I don't know where it was taken but it looks like a restaurant. It was taken on September 16, 2006.