We can’t return we can only look behind

Death in my family. Why is it so meaningless to hear “you spoke well” at a funeral? I had thought for years, literally, of what I might say when this person died. I knew I would choose to speak because my deep, loving relationship with him was totally unlikely. He was very conservative; a staunch Republican; extremely traditional; a blindly unwavering Zionist; and one of my in-laws. Seriously, the cards were not stacked in our favor to have a great relationship. And yet…

I was wooed by this man for 25 years. He loved to tell a joke and I give my heart to funny. I can be characterized as a tree hugger; he would be called a nature enthusiast. I value intellect and yes, even though I thought many of his conclusions weren’t right, he also strongly valued thinking things through. He was a flirt. OK, I used to joke with him that he was a dirty old man, but let me tell you something, that guy was a charmer. Even at the end, as we trudged to doctor’s appointments, scans and tests and hospital stays, he was chatting up the ladies behind the counter, the nurses who cared for him, any half way decent babe he could. This was quite endearing, not creepy, because he was also a gentleman. The ladies responded. He and I always danced together at parties. Always. And he was the kind of guy who was truly interested in other people. Our conversations were filled with questions on his part, and then, months later, something would come in the mail with a “thought you’d be interested in this,” scrawled on the top. Through his interrupting and contradicting he had really been listening to me. I really could go on and on. But I’m so tired from being so sad. And my dog ate my glasses yesterday so my eyes are now crossing from sitting at this computer. Fucking dog.

What relationships do you have that are improbable?


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5 responses to “We can’t return we can only look behind

  1. What a lovely tribute to your Father-in-law. It is obvious how much he touched your heart. I think when you have that kind of relationship with someone the loss is huge. Years from now you will be able to smile and remember all the wonderful things about him without the pain. I know you will always miss him, but I promise in the future when something reminds you of him you will feel a little warmth in your heart because he is with you….


  2. Fred Demirjian

    Wow…you really do write well like my lovely bride says…..Herm herm herm…. a friends’ father, an intelligent and iconic guy who was part of the fabric of our teenage years, a man who motivated his four great sons to achieve their own personal successes while providing us with silly soundbites that we will cherish for a long long time. From bicycle parts in the garage to June 3rd, from Guierrmo to Percibal, from: Stewie…..to I made you and I will break you, we will all remember him through his four boys and their wonderful families.

  3. Linda I just thought of something else/ His genes are in all the kids so maybe you can look back and return another way. Who knos the answer/ when we know that nothing leaves the planet then a spirit which I beleive is an entity enters another host. Maybe when you think about it/ nothing is gone but on a leave of absence sort of/I see aunt Mollie all the time. Love Molly

  4. Linda my love your father-in law sounds like a great person to have known. I always was interested more with flirts than flat liners. A flirt is a dare, not a cheat. A flirt gives you thoughts of possibilities/ your line about a scraweled message..saying “what do you think?” is a good communicator. Teachers that ramble on and don’t ask questions are in love with the sound of only their own voice…not communicators at all.He was a bright man with his own set of rules BUT he did want to know what you think, and maybe you did reach him and maybe he reached you too. I’m tearing up time to go LOVE MOLLY♥

  5. I’m so sorry for your loss, Linda. But what a gorgeous tribute! You’re lucky to have had each other in your lives. As he undoubtedly would have said, may you be comforted among the mourners of Zion.