It strikes me now, four years out, that Mike is more and more stuck in the past. People he knew, and who knew him, have been ever moving forward. You don't only need to look at my own life, but his nieces and nephews have all grown to the point that I barely recognize them.... friends have moved on and up in ways I don't know if he could have imagined. Babies have been born. New jobs have been found. People have moved around, gotten married..... you see, those of us who were left behind have all picked up the pieces and have continued to live. Mike hasn't. Mike still exists in January of 2010. That was the last time that he was able to move forward. I am only further reminded of this fact when I look at the things he left behind. The objects I've kept, photos, and other memories.... they are just that. Memories. Each one can bring up a new and rich memory, and it can instantly transport me to a moment in time. But the moment ends, and that is all I have left. The object and the memory.
I think it is ok to let ourselves go there from time to time. It brings a sense of comfort -- to be able to look at something that meant so much at one time or another, and to just let ourselves remember. So here, I've assembled the things that bring me the most of those memories, the things I keep with me no matter how much my life goes on. I hope that they also bring all of Mike's friends and family a moment of comfort as well, and maybe a few memories of your own.