My friend June knows a thing or two about that. She is learning to live with a new normal that is life without her husband and best friend Gerry. She tells me that part of what makes it hard is that life seems to have filled up the space where Gerry used to be and its like people have forgotten him. But I want her to know that I have not forgotten him. In fact he is on my mind a lot. I remember the things about him that I loved. He had the best smile. It lit up his whole face and then spread through the room like a golden glow. He also had a knack for telling the most inappropriate medical stories with the clinical detachment you would expect of the good doctor that he was, but most of us not being in the medical field could hardly believe what we were hearing. He hardly seemed to notice the stunned looks on our faces. Steve and I would laugh and laugh because it was almost guaranteed that a day spent with Gerry would mean another medical marvel for us add to our growing collection of Gerry stories. I remember that he was a chow hound and would eat anything that did not move! And I remember that Gerry was as wise and gentle and accepting a soul as I have ever met. He was nonjudgemental and willing to look at something from every and all perspectives and give value and respect to ideas and beliefs that were not his own.
June does not have to worry that Gerry will be forgotten because I know he is remembered by more people than she can imagine. His work in the emergency rooms of all the hospitals that relied on him brought him into peoples lives at times when they needed not only his skill as a physician, but his grace as a human being the most. I know he touched their lives in ways that he probably did not even know but in ways they will never forget. All those people may not be shouting Gerry's name from the roof tops, but they carry him in their hearts and they will remember him just like we do because a man like Gerry is simply unforgettable.