In Ever Loving Memory of Dad…

“Will you be a pallbearer?” he asked me.
I looked at him – not understanding the question.
A pallbearer is someone who helps carry a casket
at a funeral, and we weren’t having a funeral.
We were just… we were just here.
None of this was planned. We all just showed up.
As I looked into the back of the hearse, I saw a blue coffin.
Blue. Dad’s favorite color. I learned that on the way there.
I didn’t know it before. Blue is also my favorite color.

It dawned on me slowly what he was asking
and what we needed to do. Soon we 3 sons,
the caretaker, and an assistant began carrying
the casket toward a mound of earth next to where
my brother Eric was laid to rest some 7 years ago.
Every footstep brought me closer to the tears I knew
would pour out if I thought about what we were doing here…
why we were here… what it meant…
The man who raised and help carry us through our lives
we now carried together to say our last goodbyes.

Someone handed each of us a rose – I can’t even remember who.
My sister maybe? So much is a fog now; so much was surreal.
We took turns putting a rose on top of the casket. I was last.
I kissed the rose gently as a tear rolled down my chin -
and it reminded me of the last time I hugged my Dad,
kissed him on the neck, and whispered “I love you”.
It was just a few weeks before.
My God, it feels like it was yesterday…
I stood next to Mom & put my arm around her – hoping to
offer some comfort, yet when I heard her sobbing
I couldn’t hold back my own tears any longer.

So much afterwards is a mere blur now.
We went to lunch & I kept looking for Dad at the table.
Everyone was here – it wasn’t making sense he wasn’t.
We went back to Mom & Dad’s afterwards and I kept
expecting to see him sitting in his spot on the sofa.
I kept listening for his voice – why couldn’t I hear Dad?!?
Everyone was home – the kids were all Home visiting for
the first together time since Mom & Dad’s 25th Anniversary.
Where was Dad?!?!??? He should be here for this.
He’d be in Heaven!

And he is.

And… I’m really trying to find comfort knowing
he’d want all of us to be happy & not sad.

That was his Life.

And I want to make him proud.

Sooo… day by day
trying to keep my chin up and focus my thoughts
on those who I’m blessed to be sharing
this brief time we have together.

That’s why I had to take the time tonight
to just share from the heart what’s been
going on for me lately – because that’s
something I rarely do: Share my Life.

My final thought before I call it a night:

Give others the Gift of a long life with you.
Everyone will be glad you did – including YOU…

for Dad – I miss you.
Nov. 12, 2014