The other day, someone I hadn’t seen in years asked me what I missed most about Sam being gone. I said I missed the laughter the most.
Sam could make me laugh so hard I had trouble breathing, usually as he did one of his “bits.” He would find an absurdity in the world, and just keep commenting on it, getting everyone around him going with how silly it was. Or he would try to prove something, like that he could get more grapes in his mouth than anyone else, and the whole time, you would just laugh as he kept up the running commentary.
After I had this conversation, I thought more about it. Is it the laughter I miss the most? I certainly miss the laughter. But there are so many other things to miss. Sam’s ability to call out people on their views in a way that didn’t make them defensive. Sam’s ability to see the wonder in people who others overlooked. Sam’s enthusiasm about every meal, every book, every movie, every song.
But then I realized what it is that I miss the most. I miss holding him close in a hug, him towering above me, as this grown man said, “Love you, Mom.” I miss hearing his voice tell me he loves me at the end of every phone call, at the end of every text exchange.
So yes, I miss the laughter, the thought provoking conversations, the wonder with which he looked at the world, but I miss hugging him the most.