To My Papa

On this day I will mourn for you. I will flash through every memory I have with you, there are so many that it may take me a few days. I will cry rivers and my heart will continue to break at the loss of you.

You were a wonderful example of a Christian man, a man to be admired, a man to be envied. And if I do say so you were quite the handsome man (nice work Grams, I would’ve left Maryland for him too). You were a man of firm discipline and abounding in love for your family.

You held me as a baby and you crawled around with me. We spent many nights sleeping in the living room together watching Red Green and MAD TV (totally age appropriate). You taught me to play Canasta, Crazy 8s (bugs bunny cards), Dominos, and Chinese Checkers (the best when I was able to finally beat you). You taught me to shoot the BB gun out by the no longer existing pasture. You taught me how to feed the calves and steers, and everything I know about cows. You taught me how to bale hay and tighten the twine (even though you never actually let me do it). You taught me how to drive tractor, yelling at me the whole way, but I learned just the same. You and I spent many a days during harvest, driving to the elevator and back, eating peanuts. We picked apples and you would slice them for me under the tree, we dug up carrots and washed them in the cow tank, we picked fart plums, and zucchini from behind every shed on the farm.We raised and butchered chickens. You helped me make my own play house out of a shed in your grove, and you made me a mail box for it too!

You made me anything I asked. When I wanted a doll bed, I got it. A bench and chairs, done. When I wanted a barn because you had made the boys one, I got that too. You made most of the picture frames in my house. And my baking rack and bread box, those remind me every day of how amazing you were.

When I got my first real boyfriend you threatened, “I’m not afraid to go back to prison.” And you gave him a chance. When he broke my heart you held me close as I cried. While this may not have been in your comfort zone. You did it anyways.

My children were both fortunate enough to know you. You gave them many of the same joys you gave to me. There’s nothing quite like a great-papa. And there really is no comparing to you. They will always know you, I’ll be sure of that.

I could go on and on with all of my memories, probably filling pages and pages and pages of a book. I will remember all of those memories, and the ones I keep in my heart, and they will never leave me. I know you have found peace with Jesus. You deserved that. My sister-in-law put it perfectly, “God is just making sure Charlie’s Guardian Angel supply is fully stocked.” He now has the best one he could.

Today, I will mourn for you. And I will have your hanky, a pack of tic-tacs, the cross necklace you gave me when I was a child, and I will always have “me too”.

Me too, Papa. Me too.

 

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