Tuesday, June 17, 2008

More Grief

I dropped my mother off at the airport and it feels like Sunday night. Tomorrow I get to start over. Yay. But tonight, I wallow in my grief for my dad.

I miss him so much. It seems that nothing can go through my stream of consciousness or past my line of vision with me thinking of him. It’s not as obsessive as it might sound. I am not doing it on purpose. It’s just that so many things make me think of him, without even trying.

For one thing, where I live is so much like the areas he and I would camp and fish in. The roads are so much like those we would travel on to get there. After a brief hot spell, the weather has turned that perfect camping weather of cool evenings and warm days. I had to come outside and sit on the porch to enjoy it tonight.

It’s also because he taught me how to think. How to learn. How to appreciate life. How to wonder about differences. How to love nature, fresh air and peaceful evenings. Just like it is right now, with my mother gone and the temperature a mere 73 degrees, the crickets (or whatever they are) chirping.

No, he wasn’t perfect, but can’t my mother miss him just a little? She is so damned relieved to be rid of him. It's awful. She even used the phrase "God bless his soul," at one point. And you know people only say that when they are speaking ill of the dead.

The only reason I was sad she was going home was that she wouldn’t be sharing any of her visit, and therefore me, with him.

On some level I knew but never truly realized how much of an extension of him she was. Now that he is gone, I have no reason to like her.

The two of them helped me to be the competent person I am, so my mother isn’t without value. But I do wish sometimes that she was a person I could love.

Monday, June 09, 2008

No Confirmation of Receipt

I went to the post office and mailed his present, my niece's present and another item. As I was putting my credit card away I realized that for the first time in years I did not get a delivery confirmation receipt. And it shocked me that I hadn't even thought to get one.

Amazing what a "not interested in contact at this time" can do.

I used to always get one and a large part of the reason was in case pettiness was genetic I could prove that I had always mailed his presents in time for the attorney's office to get them to him before his birthday or Christmas.

But now it doesn't matter, according to my subconscience that apparently has absorbed and assimilated the 'no contact' news better than I realized.

And it was a little bit of a relief actually, less baggage (and paperwork) as I left the post office, simply having mailed a package like it was any other.

17 years later maybe I'm finally letting go a little.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Sending the birthday gift

I am about to tape up and address the box. As I was wrapping the present yesterday, I wondered how much longer I will do this. Will this be the last gift I send? Will this be the last time I put something in a box and think about how something I've touched, he will touch?

I am tired of the other thoughts that occur when I send birthday and Christmas gifts - the thoughts that include "what does he think of me?" "How does this gift affect the impression he has of me?" I hate not knowing.

But I also realized as I put the items in the box that the young man I am sending this box to is not the baby I carried, birthed and held. I felt I knew that baby. I do not know this young man. I truly thought I would have known more about him, had more snapshots, more stories of his childhood, maybe even a home-made card or note from him. I don't know the color of his eyes or his blood type - questions I've asked M but, like many other questions, including 'what happens to our letter and gift exchange once he enters college and adulthood?' have gone unanswered.

I guess as usual I'll take it one day at a time, waiting and being ready for him or her should they want or need me.

Sunday, June 01, 2008


My daughter loves to "read" books. On Sundays she goes to the nursery and for months now she pulls down a basket of small, square, board books. The first one she reads every Sunday is Daniel, followed by Noah, and then Jonah. I usually leave within the first few minutes as she is launching into Daniel, sitting on the floor, lifting the flaps to reveal various characters like King Darius.

At lunch today, her daddy was out due to another commitment and it was just her and me. She mentioned something about Daniel, maybe in the context of D is for Daniel - even though we usually say Daddy or other things, but she had just been in the nursery and her book was fresh in her mind. I looked at her and wanted to day, "You have a brother named Daniel." [not the name I gave him]

Since she is now of an age of talking and remembering, I didn't follow my gut and say it out loud. When she was younger I would sometimes tell her she had a brother, but now that she is getting a little older I wonder when it will be the right time to tell her, to start mentioning him and letting her know about him, even if he isn't a part of our everyday lives and doesn't want to be.