Sometimes I just write to write. It calms me and helps me to achieve perspective on day to day things. It’s funny how life can change in a matter of days, weeks or months. Just about five (5) months ago my Father moved on from this life to the next and my Mother was not far behind him. Five months is not a lot of time in relation to fifty two (52) years of being able to hear the voice, feel the touch or smell the smell of a Mother and Father. Just a few weeks ago I was still grieving the loss of my Dad. I remember spraying on some fragrance of my Dad’s cologne that my Mom had given me and sensing him. I remember so much through sensory perception that it’s hard to explain.
My Dad was self-employed and used to take me to work with him when I was younger. I’ll never forget the smell of Old Spice and Coffee with cream. I can still see Dad holding a cup of coffee driving to the Car Wash on any given Saturday morning. They didn’t have travel mugs back then. Dad would always shave in the morning and pat on some Old Spice. That mixed with the smell of coffee is a treasure to me that has no price.
I’ll never forget the clock radio that was in the bathroom between the two sinks. Every morning I can remember hearing my Dad’s electric shaver and J.P. McCarthy. As for Mom, well, my Sister and I just recently had this conversation and it all revolves around Downey Fabric Softener. Mom always used Downey fabric softener on the laundry. That’s the smell of mom. My kids hear her voice all of the time. They hear her saying in a high pitch “Bob”, because their Grandpa always teased Grandma and her response was the same. Mom would murder words sometimes and boy o’ boy Dad would make a joke out of it every time.
I can remember one evening while my Mom was on the phone with her Mom (which was every night after dinner).
Dad’s back was hurting so he was laying on the floor in the family room. Mom never got to get a word in edge wise with Grandma, so she would say “yea”, A LOT. Our ears only heard, “yea, yea, yea”. Well, the “yea’s” would sometimes be pronounced with a closed mouth “M” sound that would turn into a “MM’Yea”. I’ll never forget this.
My mom was sitting in the chair in the family room, Dad was laying on the floor, on his side. I was laying behind him with my arm bent, elbow on the floor and holding my Dad’s head. Weird, but true. And it sounded like Mom was saying “meow” instead of “mm’yea”. Dad got such a laugh out of this that we both started saying. “meow”, “meow”, like we were Cats. Mom got so mad at us and we laughed even harder.
Simple memories of a Mom and Dad
As I try to reconcile with the loss of my Mom and Dad all I can do is live. There is nothing else that I can do. I can’t hurry the grieving process and I can’t stop the emptiness that I’m feeling.
I miss Dad’s smell and I miss Moms voice. I miss the smell of Coffee and Old Spice on that Tree of a Man that I spent the last 52 years looking up too. I miss being called “Mick” by my Dad. He’s the only one in the entire universe that called me “MICK” and I desperately miss hearing it.
Most of all, I will miss the trips to Grandma and Grandpa’s house in Tennessee. I will miss the anticipation of the drive to see Mom and Dad and the nervous excitement of the kids going to see Grandma and Grandpa. I will miss pulling up in that driveway and seeing them on the deck waiting for us. I will miss the feeling of home that I got from that house that Bob Built. The love and compassion that my parents had for my children and the love and joy that my children had for their grandparents will never be matched. I’m so glad that Abigail was able to know Grandma and Grandpa “No-No”. I’m confident that she will always remember.
I can only hope that this Christmas we will all remember the smells, sounds and feelings of loved ones who have left us. And I pray that those smells, sounds and feelings will bring us Joy Unspeakable.
Miss you Mom and Dad