Dad

The days hit hard and heavy, and the memories come on strong. God took you before I was ready, as if I could ever prepare for you being gone. Under your protection, I could always tell the truth. And you had this laugh of understanding, letting me know you knew what I was going through. No judgment passed, just that twinkle in your eye telling me what I should do. It’s not that I always heeded your advice, but it was the way you could make me feel better about failing and even more – how to dig in my heels and push on through. And even now when I know what you would want us all to do, my sorrow clouds the voice of your wisdom, and the blow to my gut has made it hard to understand a life without you.

Dad, I know I’ll find my footing, eventually, but it will be a hollow victory ’til I see your smile again.

~ Susan

Check-in with Dad

Unable to sleep, I’m thinking and reflecting on my week. It was only last weekend that you left, and I am stuck in this place of reality and telling myself you are just gone somewhere for a bit.

I’ve picked up my phone a few times to give you a call. Putting it back down was an indescribable pain.

Then last night, as I was thanking someone for asking me how I was, I was talking normally – composed – and the next thing I knew tears were just falling at will.

To be expected, sure. Embarrassing, yes.

Last night I told Evan that I couldn’t imagine spending 56 years with someone – highs and lows, the good, the bad, the ugly, never leaving their side during illness to only have to let them go and stand alone.

There were times I would get so frustrated that mom wouldn’t let Wayne and me help her more. But as I’ve watched her grieve and listened to her intimate moments of saying, “goodbye,” I’ve gained a truer understanding of marriage, love and commitment.

My mom made my dad a promise that he would never have to wonder who would be taking care of him.

To the very end, she kept her promise! I will forever respect and appreciate the love and care she showed my dad. My losses, my awakenings, my confusion and clarity are all heightened.

All to say, week one of life without you is in the books, and last time I checked, my grief is still with me.

Storms are rising

Waterless clouds brew and

Churn an everlasting turmoil

That will haunt everything we do.

Too many demons we carry

Ego and pride working together

To divide and conquer anything that is good.

This song I sing will mean many things. So if you find a way to feel, I’ll give to you my words, for you to hide or steal – just increments of me passed on and passed away ‘til that moment you might see all I gave was all I had today.

Both lost to the misery we choose, we sink deeper among the demons that make us hate to feel and help us lose. I’ve dipped my feet in water so cold it burns. And kissed the fruit that sours and turns. I’ve shone in the dark and faded with the light. I’ve mended my wounds and climbed to new heights. And still the moon glistens, and the sun tingles my skin. So I know my living just might not be a dying sin.

I’m here, but I’m gone. My words are all I have left to whisper or scream or not speak at all. I’ll just place them here. And make my
entrance or take my fall.

Numb

I’ve dealt with negativity all week. It makes my head hurt. I cut a friend loose and finally accepted the betrayal of the only person who could hurt me. It makes my stomach turn. It makes me mad at myself. It makes my arches ache.

So I’ve decide to become addicted. The way I have it figured – I only really have maybe 30 years left. My kids will be grown, and I’ll be retired. Why not live out those years homeless, giving BJs in some alley for my next fix and thinking my thoughts are poetry.

But numb. I wanna know numb.

When Time Runs Out

Priorities get slanted as I sit on the sidelines while you search for something more.

(Somehow I’ve lost myself).

And I watch you grow more restless as you look everywhere but here.

(I never thought this would be us).

Memories get lost at the sight of something new, and when time runs out, there’s just nothing more I can do.

(I know it’s over).

Fingerprints

Like fingerprints on

windows forgotten or

left to remember, your

existence lingers,

clinging to me as

if still a newborn

warm upon my chest.

I dare not wipe away

these sacred stains

within my lifeline,

your presence, your

mark on this world,

your fingerprints

clutching my soul.

Lovely reminders etched

in glass to forever mark

those who came and

those who passed.

Happy 18th, baby girl!

Love, Mom