There Is No Closure For This Wound

12 years ago today, my life changed forever, and I never saw it coming. Or, maybe I did, and I am 12 years deep in denial. Either way, it hit me out of left field. Oh look, a baseball reference. You would have loved that.

The thought of that late night long distance call still shatters my heart every time. She could barely get the words out. It didn’t matter what words she said, all I heard was “Papa’s gone.”

There is not a day that goes by that I don’t miss you, or think of you, or need you. 12 years gone and I still don’t know how I made it past day one. I don’t even remember how I kept breathing, walking, living. It all seemed so pointless without you.

And it is all a lie. You are not in a better place. You are not where you belong. You belong here. With me. Your memory is not sufficient enough to replace all that you were…no, all that you are to me.

My heart hurts, Papa. It hurts every single day without you. I hate so much, Papa, and hate never fills the void, it only makes it bigger.

I hate that you are gone.

I hate that you were stolen from me.

I hate all the things I still don’t understand about how, and why.

I hate myself for being too naive to ask questions.

I hate that I have to face each day without you.

I hate that all the memories we had yet to make were stolen from us.

I hate the things that happened, that would have never happened had you been there. Right where you always were. In my corner, holding my hand, telling me it was all going to be okay.

After you were gone, Papa, it wasn’t okay anymore. You were what made it okay.

And I’m starting to forget, Papa.

I can barely remember what your voice sounded like.

I can scarcely remember your cologne.

I’ve forgotten what your home looked like when you were in it, all I can think of is the shell it is now.

I’ve forgotten the smell of the upholstery in your Cadillac, the smell I used to love.

I’ve forgotten all the little details of the doll house you were building me, even though it was more for you.

But most of all Papa, I’ve forgotten how to be loved. I can’t remember what it was like, all I can remember is that it was good. No one will ever love me like you did, Papa. It’s not possible. No one will ever love anyone the way you loved me. It was so unique and special and perfect. It was never expected or assumed or persuaded or begged. It just existed and it was pure, and it was better than any Jim Dandy Sundae or fresh pack of baseball cards or burnt and “cremated” hamburger.

I try to stay positive, especially on this day. I try to remember all the good things, and trust me, I’ve plenty to choose from. But it all still hurts, and I’m a fool to deny myself that pain.

I wear my heart on my sleeve, Papa. It’s one of the few ways I’m so different from you. I guess nurture can’t take over everything. I wear it proudly though, Papa. Literally and figuratively. It’s beaten, and bruised, and broken, and scarred, but I wear it. You’re in there. No one else can see it but me, but you are.

She hates my tattoo. Well, plural, tattoos. I like to think we would have bonded over them. Maybe I could have convinced you to get more. That would have been so cool. A lot of things would have been cool.

….and just like that, the pain is back. It felt good for a minute, I even smiled. But that cold hard truth creeps in and reminds me that you are gone.

And I hate that most of all. The one thing I can’t forget; you are gone.




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May 2014
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