I woke up this morning to news that my uncle passed away. He was admitted to the hospital a little over a week ago and had just returned home on Thursday upon his request. I talked to him via Messenger while he was still at the hospital and he told me that he was ready to go. I know that losing someone you care about isn’t something you can truly prepare for, but how I wish you could.

I wish I could’ve hugged him one more time. The last time I saw him in person was 6 years ago.

I’m reminded of my 6-year-old self, hanging from his arms as he’d lift me off the ground. I called him “Dada” instead of “Tito” because he was the first father figure in my life. When I was born my dad was in the US and I didn’t meet him until I was 3.

I can hear Dada’s voice clearly in my head. Someday I won’t remember what he sounds like anymore.

Being thousands of miles away tricks you into thinking it’s not real. Until you see grief on your aunt’s face, hear your mom sniffling quietly, and watch your dad send numerous messages, anxiously waiting for a response when it’s late at night on the other side of the world.

My uncle passed away in the afternoon. It was 5 am here. Hours away from sunrise. The beginning of a day your mind knows comes eventually.

He said he was ready to go. His voice fills my head. Remember this. Remember him.

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