Kimi yo, Hana yo

The year of firsts after a loved one passes is the hardest time; especially when it’s someone you’re close to.

I lost my grandfather a month prior to my birthday. It was his first birthday a week ago. We face our first Christmas and New Years… without him.

I wish it got easier. Sometimes I forget that it happened and it’s glorious. Then I see small things that remind me of him — Swiss Miss hot chocolate with the teensy marshmallows, for one. He had the biggest sweet tooth.

It’s fucking weird, talking about him in the past tense.

The last day I was in my hometown, I had memories flood my brain.

train station in my hometown

I used to hold hands with my grandfather and walk with him as a little girl to go to the hospital together. There’s a bakery right before you step onto the platform. This train goes directly to Tokyo for 10 bucks and an hour of your time.

bamboo grove by the grave

This is a bamboo grove by the family crypt. I’ve always loved how Miyazaki-esque it is.

Two weeks later, I was in Hawai`i to see a glorious sunrise with my grandfather. This is on Magic Island; aptly named.

I’m still grieving. I’m still struggling.

But I got help.

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