I miss you. May have something to do with the boys starting 1st and 3rd grade – getting so big they reach my shoulder – that makes me wish you were coming over to see them after school and ask about their day. I don’t know what time would look like with them now because it’s been so long since you laid on the ground and zoomed cars across slippery wood floors and threw them on the couch. Maybe toss the football? Holler during their games? Join them in the pool? Sit next to them and watch lightning storms flash across the sky?
In the chip aisle at the grocery store, I spotted bags of puffed up proud potato chips and was surprised to find myself holding back tears. Gosh, what I wouldn’t give to grill burgers in the backyard with chips and watermelon and mint chip sundaes. All of us together, laughing and teasing mom and being one giant family.
Tonight Bryan played Tanner an audio recording from when he was two; saying prayers at bed and then making up songs, his high animated voice singing and laughing and rhyming made up words with childhood squeals. Big fabby wabby. After, Tanner and I laid in his bed. I don’t remember any of that, he laughed.
Do you remember any memories from when you were little? I’m silently willing him to conjure up all the incredible experiences we’ve gathered over his nine years to pull out one after another with clear, appreciative recollection.
No, not really.
I remember Papa putting me on a chair to ring the bells in his backyard.
We’re instantly there, Dad. In your backyard watching you hoist the boys up to ring bells before carrying them to every rose bush where you point and their chubby hand reaches down to pull of the dead petals and rain them on grass below.
I had a dream in Huntington, Tanner interrupts the falling petals. You called papa in heaven and asked him to come babysit and I remember him walking to the front door and being so happy he was here.
How did you feel when you woke up, I asked.
I was sad it was just a dream.
* Today is the last day to download a FREE eBook edition of Choosing REAL on Amazon, B&N or Christianbook.com. If you connect with this post, Ch. 3, Enjoy the Journey, is an entire letter to my dad about finding hope in the midst of loss.