I went on the treadmill this morning, mimicking life a bit. The damp cold of fall turning into winter dissuaded me from walking dogs up the real hill. “Morning Edition” kept me company as I huffed and puffed; Luci snuck downstairs to eavesdrop. I was doing ok, with the whole fa la la chore list thing, until I heard Rachel Flotard singing a ballad, “I will still live after you’re gone.” I was overcome with longing to visit my father, to share stories about kids parting, living their lives without moms and dads in the next room. All I could do was settle here.
I know that you would kick my behind if I didn’t finish what I started, raising kids to be independent, loving, capable people. I know that you would hug me close when I rage at my kids’ leavings on Christmas adventures.
You would say go start a food drive or
feed the birds Christmas pine cones slathered with peanut butter or
invite someone, who has no one, to share Christmas Day.
“You are stronger than you know.”
My son will live on after I am gone, and I want him to remember me as I remember you:
Smiling and waving, sending me on my way.
Merry Christmas, Daddy.