It’s been a while since I wrote to you and with all that’s been going on and with the ups and downs, which I’m sure you remember how it goes, life has a way of getting away from us. Take now, for instance; I am up before dawn because there are things that need my attention before I leave for work.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving—
Unfortunately, I have to pull a shift at work, which shouldn’t be too hard. It will more long than anything and lonesome too. There is so much going on at once. And this is what makes the long shifts even longer. Life is happening. The world is happening around me.
The family gatherings are a thing of the past now. Either we’ve all branched out throughout the country or we simply just don’t speak anymore. I won’t be home too late though. In fact, I should be home in time for dinner, which will be quiet this year, and quiet is preferable to me.
There are times when I look around at everything that are going on. I think about that boy I was and the man I was. I think about the man I became and the man I’m becoming and trying to be. I think back to some of our conversations and wonder if this is what you were trying to warn me about.
I remember when you would come home from work. I remember how intense you seemed when you were eating dinner. You were tired. You were mostly quiet. I suppose you had so much on your mind that all you wanted to do is sit down, relax, and enjoy a meal.
I always wondered why you seemed this way—so intense, I mean. I wondered if there was something I did wrong or if I was this little pesky kid. You used to tell me that I would understand more as I grew older. And I’ve said this to you in letters from the past; I think I do understand more now.
At some point, I think I believed the older I grew, the simpler life would become. I’m not sure if this is true or if my focus on things has simply changed. I can’t say life on life’s terms has become easier. I just think my intentions are different now. My priorities change. And I’ve changed too. This doesn’t make anything easier. It’s just life from a different perspective now.
I don’t see life as a plethora of events anymore. More and more, I’m finding myself reminded of mortality, which means time is limited commodity.
Cousin Stanley has been sick. It would be nice if you could visit him. I think he would appreciate it. Maybe you and Aunt Sondra can come in and slip him a whisper so he will know everything is going to be okay. See if Harry and Uncle Alan can come by too.
I remember calling Mom when she was sick once. She told me she had a dream that everyone came to visit her. You were there. So was Jodi. Aunt Lil was there too. Uncle Alan was there. She told me everyone was there. It was just a dream she said or maybe it was the medication she was on. Either way, she took this as a visit and I remember how happy she was to have this.
Maybe you can do this for Stanley because I think we’re all a little scared down here. And it’s hard sometimes. The facts of life, I mean. It’s hard when life keeps happening and there’s no pause button to make it stop.
I miss you Pop—
But, I do have some things I have been working on. I’ve been putting a lot of time in. I’ve been creating programs to help people that were like me. I’m trying to help families that went through what we went through.
Turns out I landed my own podcast, which is pretty much like my own radio show. I say it this way because I know they didn’t have podcasts when you were around. We aired a test run last night and I made the others in the room cry. Cousin Rosalie will get a laugh out of this when I tell her because she and I joke about me making people cry.
The holidays are tough for me Pop. But then again, I think you already knew this. I don’t want to work tomorrow either. But it’s like you once told me, life isn’t always about what we want to do. Again, this is something you told me I would understand when I grew older. And once again, you were right Pop.
I always see this time of year as the like the downhill quarter which brings us to the end of the year. By this weekend, the city will be dressed in decorations. Christmas will be here before we know it. And next, New Year’s Day will come along, and just like that, 2018 will be gone. Can you believe it? We’re almost at 2019. It’s been almost 30 years since you’ve gone away
I want to do something different this year Pop. I want to build things and create things this year. I want to leave certain things in the past and build a new future. I’m scared sometimes that I might not find a way to pull of my trick. But I’ll keep trying. I’ll keep looking for the angles. I’ll keep plugging away and I won’t quit.
I got my own show, Pop . . .
Can you believe that?
I wish there was some way you could be a guest. We could tell them about the walks we used to take on New Year’s Day at Point Lookout. Or maybe we could teach people that not everything is so goddamned crucial, that we should find ways to get along better and that we shouldn’t argue so much because Pop, the older I get, the more I realize that time is fleeting and if we’re not careful, time might run out on us and all we’ll be left with are things that went unsaid.
At this point in my life, I don’t ever want to leave anything unsaid
(unless it has to be.)
So long, Pop.
Tell Mom not to worry. The traffic shouldn’t be too bad when I drive home tomorrow. Tell her I’ll drive carefully though, just in case.
I’ll write again soon