"When someone you love dies, and you're not expecting it, you don't lose her all at once; you lose her in pieces over a long time-the way the mail stops coming, and her scent fades from the pillows and even the clothes in her closet and drawers. Gradually, you accumulate the parts of her that are gone. Just when the day comes-when there's a particular missing part that overwhelms you with the feeling she's gone, forever-there comes another day, and another specifically missing part"
-John Irving, A Prayer for Owen Meany
This, from a very favourite book of mine, is one of the best descriptions, in my opinion, of how profound loss creeps and seeps into our daily lives.