Two weeks after Ephraim was born, my grandfather passed away.
So we packed up our newborn and headed to Kentucky to the funeral. I was a brand-new parent, and I was suddenly and painfully aware of the shifting climate of the family. My dad’s family had always been close, making sure to spend holidays together and hold reunions and reunite frequently, the families of the five Jarboe siblings convening at my grandparents’ house like so many streams returning to the spring. For a child, this was an incredibly comforting and secure ritual, and one that was taken for granted for a long time.