That Damn Death Thing AgainPosted: January 30, 2008
It’s such a cliche, but I’d love to start this letter like someone writing a postcard:
Wish you were here.
Today marks eight years since you’ve been here. And that sucks. It really, really sucks. Each year I think it’s going to get a little easier. It doesn’t. In fact, this year, it’s a little harder. You probably like the company, but let’s be honest, we’re not real happy about Tim being there with you. Gramma, OK, we kind of expected that, but not Tim. And certainly not now.
But, at the same point, you’ve got each other there, “in heaven” as Aidan would say. And he does say it, Dad. Every night at prayers, he talks about Papa O, Uncle Tim and Great Mimi O looking down on us from heaven. And, we still light candles at church every week. Do you hear him when he says, “we pray for you Papa O”? I hope you do.
I told him tonight at prayers that we had to say an extra prayer for you. He had one question. “What number is Papa O, dad?” He wanted to know how old you are. I told him. And he seemed happy.
You’d love him, Dad. I know you would. To see his mind work. I swear you can see him working things out, figuring them out. It’s such a great thing to say. And he’s having trouble making the ‘s’ sound, and a lot of times I think about how you would be able to help him sound it out and work it out. And I think about how you would have to hold back the laughter at some of the things he says and does. At his recall. Just amazing what he retains.
I think of you a lot, Dad, when he’s frustrating us beyond belief. Because, he is just 3.5. I think of how you never raised your voice. And if I feel myself doing it, you pop into my head almost instantly. Or I think about you when I try to give him my look. I can tell you that it certainly isn’t working on him (yet) like your look worked on me.
And, Dad, your new grand-daughter, Erin, would melt your heart. First, she was such a relief to us at such a horrible time, but you know that, don’t you? But, gosh, Dad, her smile is infectious. All she does is giggle and smile. Giggle and smile. She’s almost eight months now, Dad, and becoming such a little person. You’d love to play peek-a-boo with her. I know you would. She’s such a little girl, even now. But, my goodness, she’s this close to crawling. And then things are going to change around our house, that’s for sure.
I wish you could meet her. I wish you could hold her. I wish you could see how much happiness she’s brought to us. She really is our little angel.
Dad, we worry about Mom. She’s given us a couple of scares this year, most recently around Christmas. You’d be amazed though, she actually admitted that she was probably feeling the stress. Can you believe it? I mean, I know where I get my stubborn side from. She always says it’s from you, but I know a lot of it is from her. She held up incredibly well during Tim’s passing, but I think it’s catching up. Not just to her, but all of us. We try to get her to cut back on things, but you know how hard that can be.
The good news, though, is that Lynn, John and Lauren moved into the house, so now Mom is in the addition. It works out great for everyone, but that was stressful, too. And so was Gramma’s last year. But you could probably guess that. It was just a lot, Dad. More than anyone should have to go through.
I should write more. I’m sorry I don’t. It’s not easy. It hasn’t been for eight years. Not that I’m saying it’s easy on you, because I know that’s not true either. Oh, Dad, I don’t know what I’m saying. That’s the hardest part with this. It’s like I know today is coming. I just get in this funk. I look at the calendar and I’m like, oh yeah.
I want you to see everything going on. I want you to meet Aidan and Erin so much. Tim and Gramma can tell you about Aidan. I know they got a kick out of him. And Gramma was thrilled that Erin’s middle name is Margaret. That brought such a smile to her face.
Every day, Dad. I think about you every day. I miss you ever day. And in some strange way, it almost makes me feel like I’m closer to you. But at times I still get upset. Upset that you’re gone. Upset that I wasn’t there.
Damn it, Dad. I miss you.