He Will Never

Today is hard.  I’m feeling so overwhelmed by the smallest things.  Yesterday I came back to my empty apartment.   It’s quiet in here, and I’m forced to be alone with my thoughts. Part of me thought that I may buckle down and start crying so hard I couldn’t breathe. But instead, I’m having moments that take my breath away. Moments that almost throw me over sideways in pain.  And I cry.  But I hold my head in my hands and let it out.  I release the wrenching pain in my heart and let it spill out of me; one tear a time. I can count about six hundred as they leave drops on my gray shirt.  I think of things that are almost too much to bear.

He will never hear the song I’m listening to.

He will never smell the candle that I have lit.

He will never see the room I rearranged in the loft.

He will never drink the decaf coffee that I bought for him for the next time he came over.

He will never stand in front of the grill. One of his favorite activities.

He will never take another walk.

He will never see that I took the ombre out of my hair – all brunette, just how he liked it.

He will never sing from the top of his lungs (he was a great singer)

He will never write in his beautiful penmanship – thankfully I have it tattooed on my arm.

He will never hold my face.

He will never laugh.

He will never walk me down the aisle.

He will never sing songs with my babies.

It will always feel like this was too quick for me to comprehend. As I was unpacking tonight from my trip down to Florida, I sifted through the clothes I never wore; thinking to myself  “I can’t believe I cared about what I’d be wearing down there.”  or “this just goes to show how unprepared I was for all of this.  A little black dress for New Years? Really?”  There truly wasn’t a single thought in my mind while putting together this suit case that I was preparing for a trip to say goodbye to my dad.  Not one single thought.  And as I fold these clothes away that feel like poison between my palms, I cling to the dress I wore when he died.  I want to rip to to shreds, curse it.  But instead I let it slip through my fingers – this was the last dress we held hands in. The last dress he saw me in.

They say it will get easier.  Never bearable, but easier. And I want to believe them. I want to believe that I won’t feel such an overwhelming sense of emptiness in the part of my heart that he owns.  I want to believe that when I hear a song that’s powerful, I won’t double over and feel suffocated.  I want to believe that when I wake up in the morning, this was all just a bad dream.

I want to believe that he will come back. For me. For my mom. For my sisters. For a better life that doesn’t involve him fighting for his every day strength. He was living for all of us.  I love him for that… and for a million+ other reasons.

But most of all, I love him for being my dad. And I miss him to a depth that’s unexplainable. The lack of tangibility is the hardest comprehension of all – the touch, the sight, the sound, the scent. These are the things that crush my insides. But I feel him. I have to believe that while he may not do things that I can hear or see or touch or smell – he’s living his life all around me in swirls of gentleness. He’s in the snow. The rain. The sun. The moon. He is everywhere.