Why is it that I feel a compulsion to go through files, notebooks and journals at the beginning of each year? I’m bad at throwing things away, so this effort is really quite ineffective. I just finished reading through a pile of letters my husband-to-be wrote to me in the months before we married in 1958. Qui
And now I’ve come across a piece I wrote in 1996, five years after he died. I find that it rings true to this day. This is what I said:
As the fifth anniversary of your death approaches, there are so many things I wish I could share with you.
Well. I can’t.
But I can hope that somewhere, wherever you are, you know these things.
I hope you know that it has been an endless five years and also, the time has flown.
It has been painfully lonely, and it has been filled with friends and family and lots of love, and people who care.
I have learned to live alone and like it.
I have learned to figure out my own taxes, and I still don’t like doing it.
I hate buying liquor for a party.
I’m not good at opening wine bottles.
Most of all, I hate putting the silverware away after a party. I’ve taken to just throwing it into the chest, instead of putting it carefully into the little slots.
Those things are your job, damn it!
But I’m doing okay.
I don’t sleep so well alone.
And sometimes I don’t think so well alone.
I miss chewing the fat with the neighbors. I just can’t do it the way you did.
I miss your unreasonable optimism, your point of view on things, your help in problem-solving.
Whatever you did or did not do, you always supported my spirit, and I miss that.
I hope you know about these kids of ours.
They get A-plus reproducing in the last five years. Two grandchildren have become seven, soon to be eight.
They have all moved into new houses or to new places.
They all have jobs that please and excite them.
You should also know that most everyone is sick of hearing me talk about them.
I credit you with so much of their success.
There never was a better dad.