Things You Say to a Dead Loved One OR Your Kid When They’re at Sleep Away Camp for the First Time

  1. We miss you terribly.

  1. Are you making friends?

  1. Is it everything you hoped it would be, or have there been let downs?

  1. I’ve been thinking about you a lot lately…

  1. I wish we hadn’t gotten into that fight about politics before you left. It feels so trivial now. I didn’t even really know what I was talking about.

  1. Are you just eating anything you want up there?

  1. Why did you have to leave us? It felt way too soon.

  1. If you can contact us from time to time, we’d love to hear from you. I know you’re probably busy, but it would be nice.

  1. It’s been raining a lot down here. Is it raining there too?

  1. Have you seen anyone you know?

  1. Is everyone just having the best time, swimming and laughing and doing arts and crafts?

  1. I keep thinking you’re just in the other room. When I call your name and you don’t answer, it hits me all over again, and I can’t stop crying.

  1. Does everyone have their own space where you are, or do you have to share?

  1. I thought I saw you the other day, but it was just your brother Mike. He needs a haircut.

  1. Want to hear something funny? Sometimes I take all your clothes out, put them on your bed and take a nap so I can feel close to you.

  1. Mike just got a car. It’s a convertible. He says that’s what you said you always wanted so he feels it was the right move.

  1. Can you keep a secret? Sometimes I dream about you. And in my dreams, you’re walking towards me wearing a white nightgown, but when I try to hug you, you disappear. I can still smell your Reese’s Pieces, though. Weird, huh?

  1. The nights are the hardest.

  1. We’re thinking about adopting a dog and giving it [your name] the Second.

  1. The other day, I heard what sounded like someone faintly whispering my name while I was speed-walking with Karen and Cynthia. Was that you, or just the wind?

  1. I baked those triple chocolate coconut brownies you kept talking about a few months ago, but I didn’t know how to get them to you, so I ate them all.

  1. Sings: You’ll remember me when the west wind moves upon the fields of barley. You’ll forget the sun in his jealous sky as we walk in fields of gold.

Answer key:

Dead loved one: 19, 20

Kid at camp: 2, 8, 9, 11

Both: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 21, 22