Vignettes

Father’s Day 2016

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We were at the podiatrist’s office the other day and Dad was in a silly mood. He was making faces at the nurse behind her back, and we both had to suppress our laughter so as not to let her in on our joke.

I’ve been playing polka tunes for him most mornings. The accordions and horns rouse in me an ancient joy and I twirl around the kitchen. From his chair by the window, Dad watches me and laughs as he claps in time to the music.

At the close of this #fathersday, I am laying against him on the couch, my left arm intertwined with his right. He is wearing the same white tee shirt he held me against when I was newborn. Not the exact shirt you see but his dad uniform.

He was paging through a book but now he’s watching these words come to life across a screen. “I’m writing about you” I say, and he giggles.

Memories flood me.

The sound of gulls crying, the sulfur smell of the bay as we settle into our favorite fishing spot on the stern. It is dawn. Late summer. When he gets a fish on the line later this day he will pass his rod to me to reel it in.

He is standing over the grill in his dad uniform. I am looking for fossils amid the stones around our above ground pool. I stretch my toes out past the border. Green clovers. White clover flowers. Soft grass. Smoke rising.

I pull back the heavy glass door. I enter Dad and Uncle’s upholstery shop (plus the spirit of their father). My own father is standing at the counter running his hands over a bolt of fabric. His arms ripple with hard work. His eyes light up to see me.

We walk hand-in-hand through the market. He is in awe with all the choices. He keeps telling me how proud he is as I fill our basket with groceries. But his pride is my true sustenance. His love is my true survival. His heart is my true guide.

#myfathermyheart #happyfathersday #purelove#loveaboveall #alzheimersawareness #endalz#alzheimers #enddem #dementia #iamacaregiver#fightwithyourheart

Crossposted to Instagram

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4 Comments

  • Reply maria :) June 19, 2016 at 11:07 pm

    Beautiful. Simply beautiful.

  • Reply Doug June 20, 2016 at 11:30 am

    Your story brings me to tears. The tears come because my Dad has this awful disease and he’s not at the stage where he could even think of doing such comical things, but God knows how I wish he could. He’s very argumentative now and angry a lot of the time. My Mom passed away from it in 2008 and now my Dad has it. I love my Dad just as much now as I ever had, but it’s difficult to keep the memories of earlier happier times fresh. I have this awful lump in my throat right now as I type and the tears are still falling. I should stop now, but thank you for sharing.

  • Reply Aaron June 20, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    I love it! Thank you for your courage and honesty.

  • Reply Aly June 23, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    Very sweet :). Hope you both enjoyed the weekend. Stay strong ♡

    Sending love, as always,
    Aly

  • Leave a Reply to Doug Cancel Reply