Saturday, January 16, 2016

366 Project - Day 16 - "(i love you too)"

January 16, 2016 - "(i love you too)"

It started last night. I had the most vivid dreams I've had in a while... and you were in all of them.

When my eyes opened this morning I was all alone in my room... and after what seemed like an eternity I became aware of the fact that I was staring at the Sacred Heart of Jesus prayer card from your funeral.

The rest of the morning was a blur... as we made our way from Danbury to Stamford for Caitlynn's ballet classes. We dropped her off and had almost four hours to kill and nothing to do. Somehow we ended up at Stamford Town Center mall... perhaps my least-favorite place to have to be. I found myself sitting alone in a chair by the window of Barnes & Noble, while Holly and Brandon went off to explore. It was miserable. I wanted nothing more than to not have to be there... so naturally I got on Facebook to "check in" and post about my misery. I tapped on "Check In" and the list of locations I could choose from popped up. The mall was, of course, the top choice... since that's where I happened to be - but what hit me hard was seeing what popped up as the second choice: "Peter's Art of Framing". I fought back tears as I sat tucked in a corner... hidden by the magazine racks which nobody appeared to be interested in.

I started thinking about what to do once we got out of that hell-hole of a mall. There was a store I had been wanting to check out way across town... so I took out my iPhone and opened the map app to put in the address and find out how to get us there, since so much of Stamford has become just a memory to me. It showed me the pin for where that address was - and said that the destination was "Frame & Save"... which it most certainly was not. But it insisted that the address I entered was going to take us to "Frame & Save" - which was the very first picture framing shop you ever worked in. I used to visit you there a lot... and I vividly remember the kites hanging from the ceiling.

The kites.

Again I found myself fighting back tears.

We had no idea what the heck to do. Quite a few times I considered swinging by to visit Dad... but at that point I just couldn't bring myself to do it. Every time I see him I see the prayer cards from your funeral poking out of his shirt pocket (he puts them there every morning)... and every time I see him he tells me that he wishes it had been him instead of you... and that if the damn ambulance had only arrived sooner you'd still be here. As much as I wanted to see him, I knew I could not handle that. Not today.

The next thing I knew we were sitting in a diner I've never been in before, way across town. We stumbled upon DiMare Pastry Shop... which I personally thought kind of sucked. The atmosphere was horrible... they had no pastries that had rum in them... and the cannoli filling was bland and gritty and I couldn't get the taste of it out of my mouth no matter what I tried. So now, even more depressed we tried to make our way to one of the beaches so Holly could walk along the edge of the water.

And that's how I ended up here... at Cove Island Park... staring out at The Sound... staring up at the sky... standing in the very same spot where you and I came to fly kites countless times. If we weren't flying them at Sherwood Island, we were flying them in the field here... especially during the "off season", when the wind was stronger and there were far less people around... like today. The two of us would try to maneuver that gigantic blue Skynasaur kite you got for us from "Frame & Save". There were times when it would lift one of us off the ground and the other would have to run to grab legs and pull person and kite back to solid ground...

Solid ground.

The very spot I'm standing on right now... which just doesn't seem as "solid" without you.

I started to cry... and had to turn and walk away alone so Brandon didn't have to see me break down yet again...

... and then I became aware.

I became aware that your puzzle ring was hanging from a chain around my neck.

I became aware that one of your bracelets was wrapped around my wrist.

I became aware that I was looking at the sky through sunglasses that had been yours.

I became aware that even the very shoes I was wearing had been yours.

(Surprisingly the watch I was wearing was NOT one of yours... but it's a pretty cool watch, and I think you'd have liked it.)

I became aware of just how many pieces of you I have...

... and how much I'd be willing to give them all back - along with everything else I posses in life - just to have you here again.

It's as if "Heaven" was the kite that pulled you away... and I'm running as fast as I can, desperately trying to catch your legs to pull you back.

Except it isn't that way.

Not really.

It's actually me desperately trying to find a kite strong enough to carry me away...

... to lift me to where you are...

... but you're really here... holding MY legs... pulling me back to solid ground...

... and when I think of it that way, the only thing I can say is...

... "I love you too!"

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