Happy Father’s Day, Daddy…
I loved you when you were here and I will love you forever…I miss you every day. I still have your recorded voice on my answering machine and the two bottles of water you made us take for the long ride home.
I am not sure what I will do with them but I still need them around. We took all of the flags that you had stored on the front porch and we have one of them proudly flying off of the deck.
You were always my hero. You could fix everything and anything and to this day I love the way you always said…jerry rig…not sure of the spelling but that was your word. I love how you would pour over the paper and stack it just so…coupon pages on one side and recycling on the other. I love how you would go into the kitchen for your hourly snacks and always come back out with a plate filled with toothpicked treasures…cheese or kielbasi or little chunks of bread. I love how you would wake us up on Christmas morning by playing Jingle Bells loudly on your stereo. I love how you loved your mom…our grandma. Johnny and Paula and Jimmy and I would always listen to you and grandma speak to each other in Polish and wonder what you were talking about. I loved when you handed me your lunchbox when you came home from work every day. We would wait on the front porch steps for you and run into your arms when we saw you.
I am forever spoiled because you always put us first. You gave us everything…wonderful Christmases and adventures fishing and trekking to chop down our tree and picnics and Idora Park. You would take us on rides and into the Penny Arcade and play game after game with us. You even took us to the cemetery on Sundays to put flowers on Grandma and Grandpa’s grave. But after that solemn occasion you always took us somewhere fun.
Everyone gardens because of you…tomatoes and peppers and all kinds of other things. It was another one of your gifts to us.
I miss you so much.
I think of you every single day.
I used to wonder what it would be like to not have you and mom with me.
I used to think it could never happen.
I used to think I would always talk to you.
I used to worry about what I would be like without you.
And now I know.
And it is not easy.
Sometimes it is unbearable.
I am learning how to live with the memories.