I have been thinking a lot about John a lot lately. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of him, it would be pretty hard to do that with Joe and Taelin around, but he has been on my mind and in my heart more lately. Today marks the one year anniversary since my last hug from John. I didn’t know at the time that it would be my last hug. He was out to visit us, before he was going to have to go back to work. His surgeries were done and his radiation and chemo were over. He had been declared cancer-free and was just working on gaining his strength back before going back to work.
The trip itself was last minute, rushed and chaotic. Taelin was sick, Tucker went into kidney failure, Joe was working….on and on… In the last couple of days of the trip, everything finally calmed down and we heading down to the riverfront to ride the carousel, or flying horses as John called them. It was Taelin’s first time and I think we have the entire trip on video. He had so much love for Taelin there hardly seemed room for it sometimes.
I took Taelin down to the carousel this morning. We rode three different times on three different horses. At one point she looked at me and said, “Papa’s horse?” I stared at her, breathless for a moment and then just said “yeah” and then had to look away as my eyes filled with tears. There is no way she remembered. There couldn’t be, I don’t even remember what horse he was riding that day. But for that moment, I wanted to believe that maybe, just maybe she did.
I found the Emerson quote above shortly after John died and it struck a chord with me. I wish that we had had more time with John; none of us were ready, none of us were smiling. There have been many tears since losing John and I know that there are many more to come. At the same time though, there are many reasons to smile. He left me with a lot of love and a reminder that the time I have left needs to be spent wisely.
I miss him dearly. I miss his off-key singing and his laugh. I miss his friend chicken and the funny way he danced. I miss listening to Joe and he banter back and forth, waiting to see which one of them them would crack up first. I miss telling him stories about Taelin and I miss watching him watch her with more love than I thought every possible between two people. I miss his hugs and his scratchy mustache on my cheek when he would say goodbye. I just miss him.