I lift my head slightly, aware that the desire to curl my body over, as if to contain or protect my pain, has eased. Tears have made tiny streams down my cheeks and I am intensely aware of the weight of these tiny drops of water on my skin, as well as the movement of the air around me over the damp and dry skin of my face.
I’m not suggesting that this was a fun way to spend my Friday afternoon, but I was happy to experience the extent of my sadness as I sat in the memorial service for a dear colleague who sadly left us about a year ago. It occurred to me that I would rather feel the loss of David keenly than not feel anything at all.
I am prepared to stand up for the opportunity to honour the impact he had not just on my life, but on so many other people who I’ve known, worked with or who’ve shared their stories of how they knew David and what he meant to them.
Thank you David, for everything. For the friendship, the time, the advice, the generosity, for the memories.
I wish we could sit in your office and I could tell you all about how I went after the career beyond the University with everything I have and how I’ve discovered I’m capable of things I had no idea were possible when we last talked. I wish I could tell you that I’m still looking for the right man, but as per your advice I’ll make damn sure he’s a good one.
One of David’s great loves was Astronomy, as evidenced in his brilliant, brilliant research career. This video was pointed my way on Twitter this morning and it left me in awe of the beauty of the world around us. Almost painfully so: it feels an apt way to close.