Thursday, November 23, 2006

Thinking of you

Dear Daddy,


If you only knew how much emptiness and sadness you left behind, would you have let us go? Would God still have taken you away from us? I know you tried your best even to the end. On Feb 6, my life changed. On Nov 6, 2006, I hoped that it would stop. When you came home that last day of your work, no one knew it was cancer. No one could imagine how quickly and fast everything would spread. I hoped one day to have a pizza party when you went into remission. It had to happen, you were that strong. You suffered 9 terrible months daddy. It takes this long for a life to be made, but it took this long for it to destroy you.


I watched you live, struggle and die. On that weekend, you told me it would be tough. I remember every moment. Standing and watching the coat on the hanger since I couldn’t bear to witness that last breath. Touching your cold hand and still believing a miracle would happen. Not being able to move when they told me you were gone. I will always remember kissing you on your forehead and you asking me why I was being so nice to you that day. At a moment when everyone left the room, and you were napping, I lay my head against your chest and listened to your heartbeat. I didn’t need any words; just knowing you were still there with us was enough for me. I memorized everything. I will always have that with me.


This isn’t fair. I wish we had more time. Time to see a baseball game, eat dinner, talk about school, politics, the apartment, everything. Do you know that I still can’t go through your things? I cry every time I pick something up because I feel that I shouldn’t go through your private belongings. You never went through my things and always gave me the privacy I needed, so how can I go through yours?


We were a team and I am like you in so many ways—strong willed. I will always be daddy’s little girl. Although I’m scared of bugs and the dark, I feel like I can go through anything after this. I think I will be okay because I know how you did everything for us, and I will never ruin all these plans. I pray that you are in better hands and are at peace. You can do so much more for us now than when you were sick.


Not too long ago someone told me that grief is like the ocean. I may be standing in calm water one moment, then a whole clash of waves can come upon me at once. This also reminds me of a passage in Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God. Janie tells her friend how she feels since her husband has died. She says that "love is lak de sea. It's uh movin' thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from de shore it meets, and it's different with every shore." She goes on to say that "it's uh known fact, Pheoby, you got tuh go there tuh know there. Yo' papa and yo' mama and nobody else can't tell yuh and show yuh. Two things everybody's got tuh do fuh theyselves. They got tuh go tuh God, and they got tuh find out about livin' fuh theyselves." It's the truth.


I see your picture on your desk table every day and I always think about you. So many people love you and you are greatly missed. By taking it a day at a time, I hope that I may learn how to live with this. On days like these, I want to be happy, yet I also want people to know how awful I sometimes feel. Daddy, you are with me and know that I will always try to make you proud because I love you. Rest in Peace forever.


xxroxymamaxx said...

I'm glad you wrote this Joanna.  I know it was hard though.  Their Eyes Were Watching God is one of my all time favorites, read it three times!  And yes, what Janie said is the truth.  I want to find out someday too.  Hugs and GBU, Shelly

penniepooh said...

This is such a beautiful entry. Your dad must have felt so blessed to have a daughter like you!