When I wrote, “Where are you Daddy?” I was really lost. It seems like a rollercoaster of emotions this grieving thing. I don’t like it much…but I understand the need for it. I also know that there is beauty and glory in all of it.
It’s the little things that remind me of him…my daddy. My sister and I balled when we went to his house and saw peppermints on the counter. He always had them with him in his pocket. You see my dad quit smoking 30 years ago, and his peppermints replaced that habit…so you can imagine, he always had a pocketful. Then, my sister taught him how he could let the grand kids sneak up on his lap and steal one out of his pocket. We built those memories together. At the same time, he also replaced beer with Sam’s cola. So, if we were at the store, he would ask us to get him beer & cigarettes…cola and peppermints. What fond memories.
I still hear him through music, even if it’s music we didn’t listen to together. Sometimes it’s the emotion or feeling that will zip right to my heart and remind me of him. Last summer on a road trip, and when he was in the nursing home, we listened to a lot of Carole King, Tapestry. He sure loved that album…I listened to it over and over while he would sleep. What a brilliant, soulful woman who gets to the heart of everything. While I listened, I KNEW which songs would be at his funeral…funny thing is that others have used “Way Over Yonder” for funerals before…and I never knew it. I just knew that at that at the time my daddy was in the most pain of his physical body, I prayed for his sweet release and told him he could visit “yonder” anytime he wanted…and that his mama and papa would greet him. And I also knew that the song “I Feel the Earth Move Under my Feet” would be played at the end…because my daddy would want people dancing, not crying. Even the last week of his time on earth, when he could barely move, he would rock in his chair or tap a finger to that song. It will always be our song.
I believe with all my heart that he graces me with his loving presence every day. I just get to be still and listen and look. It will be in the little things, the song of a bird, a dog that looks like his, or maybe even a Sam’s Cola.