This will be my last post in this series. It isn't that I am without thoughts. I am without coherent thoughts. So many little moments and memories are left without being written. A lifetime, although too short, with him of words, hugs, looks of annoyance, quiet disapproval, long phone conversations, and celebrations cannot be melted down into twenty blog posts.
That, and my heart is aching to see him again in person.
Maybe he would let me put sunscreen on his neck and ears. Our diligence in that task seems silly now. The edges of his ears sported light brown spots that we were so worried would become melanoma, taking him before his time. His neck, wrinkled and thickened as a true Leatherneck should be, was another of our ways to care for him when we were on the beach or outside. He allowed us to pamper him. Dad always managed to return the favor, although his application of sunscreen to our backs was rough. We wouldn't have wanted it any other way. Dad's way. You had to lean into his hand so that you weren't propelled forward.
I'd like to regain my courage to body surf the waves in a turbulent Gulf of Mexico again. I'd like to do it with him, knowing he would be there to help me to the beach. That when we reached the tent and chairs he would hand me a towel to dry my face. He'd grab a beer from the cooler and offer me one. I'd refuse because I don't like the same type of beer. Later, though, while we sat on a darkened beach or on the deck of the rented beach house, I'd sip Hazy Blur with the family. Dad would preside over us all. He would tell us about the wine, how he discovered it, talking to his wine pimp about it, and how many cases he would buy when another shipment arrived.
I yearn to see him again. I know we all do.
It will be a year on Sunday. I cry less, but when I do cry it is with terrible intensity.
I love you, Dad. I miss you.