Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Her grief is not mine to share.  Her sadness she must bear alone.  I might as well be a million miles away from her as she holds her dad's hands for the last few times.  I can do nothing but wait for her to tell me it is over, wishing that I could be there by her side.

He was the one who taught me there was a difference between NYC bagels and any other kind of bagel.  It was the water, he said.  He fed me cheese from his favorite NYC deli that he brought back every year.  It was unlike any other cheese I had ever had.  Did the cows have special NYC milk?  I even discovered there was such a thing as boxed wine because it was always in his fridge, waiting to be shared with friends and family, bringing people together.

He welcomed me into his home and talked with grand gestures, his hands always moving, hugging, beckoning.  He seemed larger than life to me and so....Italian.  Whenever I went to her house, I had the sense of being part of some extended family that I myself never had.  When I was there, I was special, even if my teenage know-it-all attitude turned away and felt embarassed by his warmth.

He is part memory, part reality from my youth that I struggle to remember.  But he was there and soon he will not be.  And I can not be there to share her pain.  But I am here, thinking of her, holding her in the light as she holds up her step-mom and family;  but I am here, hoping he passes surrounded by love and warmth, his pain controlled and his family by his side.

It is all I can do, but I will do it.

I may not be there...but I am here.



RV Vagabonds said...


Bubblewench said...

I am very sorry for your friends loss. And for yours. ::HUGS::

Charli-tan said...

He joined the church choir on a dare a few years back. They sang for the funeral and left his chair empty. They couldn't stop crying.

We met his first assistant, a woman with a HS diploma in the 70's who ended up retiring a millionaire because he pushed her to learn a computer language that later go her chosen to supervise a unit that allowed her to rise and retire at a very high pay grade.

Everyone had some story about how he had taken up for them, or brightened their lives some how. Everyone talked about how infectious his personality was.

No one really believes he's dead. He was just too alive a few weeks ago. They saw his body. We watched him die. But no one believes it. Most people seem pretty certain that at some point, this will reveal itself to be a tasteless practical joke. But everyone will still laugh. Because that's my dad, and everyone loves him.

He should hurry up and let us in on the gag, though, because people are pretty destroyed, in the meantime.

He always liked you a lot. So did my step mom. She remembers all of my friends from high school. He did, too. Oh, and all my relatives came in to town too. But they didn't bring the cheese! I'll get some for you next time I see them!