Have you really been gone a year?
I still can't really believe you're gone. Then, I still can't believe Nanay is gone. Tatay is gone. Bart is gone.
We're holding on, Daddy. I'm sorry I haven't spent more time in NY with Mom, but you know how hectic life is. I just wish Andy would step in and do his share.
He wanted to know what to get her for her birthday and I wanted to scream:"She just wants time with you and her grandchildren, damn it!" But I didn't. And when he said they could take her out to dinner, I just said "She'd love that." And she did.
I miss Andy, Daddy. I miss him the way he was before work and Chrissy and all the rest got to him and he became so damn distant from the rest of us.
I miss you. Not sick and helpless as you were those last weeks, but your real self, making silly kissing noises during romantic movies, hanging out with the girls, arguing with Mommy. What I wouldn't give to hear you two bickering again.
I think of you, when I was a little girl. Going for our special walk during our lake vacations. Seeing you at the beach in that terry lined jacket--I see it in pictures and it all floods back. Rubbing your hands and singing "O Solo Mio" when Mom made spaghetti. Chinese restaurants of the old school where the ice cream matched our eye color. "Two green and two brown," you'd say, laughing.
Two green for Mom and Andy. Two brown for you and me.
I have your eyes, Daddy, and your sarcastic sense of humor, and a lot more. Above all, I have all the love you gave me, and I always will.
Your granddaughters talk about things you did, and remember you with love, they always will.
Your son-in-law remembers your long talks about the Air Force during WWII, about history, about politics. "That was mine," he said last night. "It was just for him and me." And it was and always will be.
I hope that there IS an afterlife and that you are there watching the 1969 Mets, with your old dog Stubby at your feet and our Bart the cat lolling against you in a big furry ball. Or reading a book about Benjamin Franklin, if not actually getting to meet him!
I hope you've seen Nanay and Tatay and that you've been able to eat all the things Mommy wouldn't let you have because of fat or cholesterol or whatever.
I just hope you're there somewhere, Daddy, and you know that we love you.
All my love. Always.