Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Letting Go....

I am a sentimental fool. A few weeks after Dad died I came across the plastic bag from the hospital filled with his personal belongings. Inside I found his worn out brown corduroy jacket, his watch and his wallet. Of all the things he left behind, these I treasured most. He wore them, he touched them, he used them everyday. I didn't want to let my daddy go.... Keeping these tokens meant that I never would. In fact, there was half a pack of Winston's in the breast pocket. I used to take the cigarettes out and smell them. It was comforting.

Comforting and painful. I hung that jacket in my dorm closet throughout college. The watch and the wallet had a special place on top of my dresser. I refused to forget. I prided myself on never letting a day go by that I didn't think about him. And if I did forget, I punished myself with awful guilt. I was a prisoner to memories. I didn't realize that I was robbing myself.

The jacket was packed in a box during one of our moves and I have never been able to find it. His watch has an honored place in my jewelry box. His wallet is tucked away in the trunk where I keep old love letters and such.....

It has taken me years to understand that my dad's memory is much bigger than the stuff he carried around. I hear him in my Uncle Steve's laugh, I see him in my adolescent nephew, I feel him when my temper gets the best of me. He's in my life as much today as he was eighteen years ago. I just had to let go to find him again. A lesson slowly learned..... I can let go, I can let go.....

I came across the wallet awhile back. I was hunting for some pictures. I didn't lament or sob. I just picked it up and gave it a little kiss. Because I miss that guy!

1 comment:

  1. How did I attend college with you for four years and never know that was hanging in your closet? I'm sorry.

    I was at a funeral this morning and was reminded yet again that nothing celebrates a person more than living your life while cherishing their memory. It was a lesson you had to learn all too young. Know that you have and do inspire me. I love you.

    P.S. - Digging the new ride!