I feel like I did something wrong.
But I don’t know what else I could have done.
It was years ago. September 2004 to be exact.
A family member had just called to tell me that my uncle had passed away.
The heart is gone.
As the information was relayed I remember being in shock. Not just because one moment my uncle was alive and now he was dead but because on one hand, my world had just changed. I had just lost my uncle. He wasn’t coming back. His heart just stopped and we were going to bury him. But on the other hand, I recall that all around me nothing was changing.
I was in the cafeteria at school waiting for a friend to meet me when the call had come in. All around me, students proceeded as normal. All systems were a GO! One group sang happy birthday to their friend. Someone else had their headphones in as they studied for an exam. Nothing had changed for ANYONE and yet at the same time, my world rotated off its axis. My uncle was dead and I was in a cafeteria.
I should have stood up and left. That’s what a normal person would have done. They would have collected their things, explained what happened to their friend and cried as they walked back to their dorm. A normal girl would have done that. A normal girl would have grieved. She would have called a friend and asked for help or a prayer or to be held.
Me? I ended the phone call and looked at my plate. There was a perfectly good waffle starring back at me. So I cut it in eight perfect pieces and I ate every bit. I didn’t feel a thing. I don’t recall chewing. I don’t recall tasting or swallowing or anything. I just ate the waffle. It was the ONLY thing I could do. My uncle died and I cut eight perfect pieces.
It is now, almost seven years later and I find thatI’m at a loss of appetite. I thought I was going to write a funny expose about fish heads. I forgot I ate that waffle when my uncle died.