There was only basically a closet of items. That’s it. Just one walk in closet to represent this man’s life here on earth. At moments I felt sorry for him and how this could be all there was, but now not so much. He made it simple for his children to gather the items, sort through the old papers and photo albums. He kept every picture we sent him. He kept alot of cards and letters too. I spend my days sorting and putting the appropriate memory into whomever’s box it belongs. To be honest, I could be done, but perhaps I don’t want it to end.
Small photo boxes. That is what I am using to seperate out what is left for my siblings and me from our Dad. Our names are on each box and most fits into the box. I’m scanning photos and creating books online for each of us. Sometimes it’s overwhelming, sometimes not so much. I don’t have to be in the prescense of the last things my Dad treasured to think of him. I was in a store yesterday, saw a lovely picture frame, then read the inscription – it was Dad related.
The other night I wanted something sweet, so I took the last two Toaster Strudel and popped them in the toaster. As I began to frost them I remembered the first time I ever saw them or had them. There was only one time that I ever stayed with my Dad for a weekend after my parent’s divorce. It was like two strangers trying to figure out what to do and both somewhat alike. I was around 14. We were at the grocery store and he saw them and asked if I wanted them, I said sure. So Toaster Strudel’s, in the freezer department make me think of my Dad. Go figure.
I have found photos I never knew existed, handwritten notes for many things, papers he could have thrown out a long time ago, notes on the slots machines he played at the casinos, and recipes in his handwriting. Some treasures and some not so much.
For someone I normally didn’t see but 3 times a year but wrote to often, I sure miss him these days. I think I miss the fact that I ran out of time to ask him the questions I always wanted to and to know the man I now find in the items he left behind. He wasn’t always close, but he was here. Now he isn’t.
So I will continue to go through photos and create lasting memories in book form for my siblings and I. I will remember what I can, especially the last days of his life I got to spend with him. That is a treasure.
Grace is a gift.
P.S. If you want to help your children and family, organize your funeral before you die, and the photos you have, don’t use a ton of scotch tape to hold them in the photos albums. My Dad seemed to love scotch tape! 🙂