Monday, June 11, 2007

Nothing Hard is Ever Easy

Some anniversaries are harder than others.

Twenty years ago today, when he was only 64 and Clare was not quite 3 months old, my Dad died.

My children have no memories of him. How do I make him real to them?

He was quietly, dryly, fun.

He was smart.

He was out of town the night Marc called from Stanford and took us both by surprise by asking me to marry him. Family legend has it, that when my mother talked to him that night and told him I was engaged his response was a very calm, matter of fact, "No she's not."

He called my mother every day from work.

He would eat the last tablespoons of cereal when no one wanted to finish the box.

He listened more than he talked.

My mother once told me there was never a day that she didn't look forward to his coming home

My senior year of high school he called me in absent. He told them I had "Spring Fever."

He helped me with my
"New Math" homework.

He told us we should help our mother "will-in-gly and smil-in-gly" (emphasis on the hard g).

He expected us to be good, and not just in the sense of not being bad.

In my memory, he is not larger than life, dominating whatever was going on. That role belongs to my mother. He's there. In the background. Quiet. Steady.

Miss him.

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