Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Before bedtime Rob would read and pray with the boys. When they were little it was Dr. Suess or Eric Carle. Their prayers were simple - that they would get to go to the pool if it was summer, or that it would snow in the wintertime. As they grew, they began to work their way through devotionals or simply just read the Bible before the boys would have time to read their novels on their own.
The three bedrooms we use (the boys share a room) are all located upstairs. In order to help the boys stay focused on the "getting ready for bed" part, Rob would often sit upstairs and play his guitar in the room he and I shared so that he could remind the boys to stop chatting and just brush, change out of their jeans (it's a real concern), remember to use the bathroom, etc. Sometimes when Rob knew they were getting close to ready he would sneak into their room and hide under the covers, pretending to be sound asleep when they discovered him because they took SO LONG.
Last night Micah was getting ready for bed on his own because Noah was still working away at homework. Micah came down before bed with tears welling up in those huge green eyes of his. He explained to me the story of how Dad would hide, and that when he was done getting ready just now, he walked into his room and the blankets were sloppily arranged on Noah's bed in such a way that he thought Daddy was hiding him them. He said he actually reached out to the blanket before he remembered. He sat on my lap and cried for a long time. Noah and Sarah came and cried, too. Though I know Micah has wept, mostly because he can't stand to see me cry - and I cry. a lot. This was the first time I think Micah understood, in his 10 year old way, what it means to really miss someone.
We talked about how it's good to share these things. How it's better to cry and remember than try to forget or be so strong that you push memories away. That I always want them to tell me when they think about things like that, because it's those memories that help us to keep Daddy a part of our lives. Then we talked about how great it is to have had a Dad that read the Bible with them. That made a point to read with them, pray with them, talk to them about what he thought about the Bible said EVERY night he was able. And they remember.
We sat for a long time. The four of us. Micah on my lap. And I thought about how I missed Rob this week. I thought about how it's not just the sweet moments like Micah remembers, but in particular as we settle back into routines and activities. His help with the driving, especially in the evening. Or how when we'd both be going different directions because of different kids' commitments - I would come to the point over the top of our hill where I can see our driveway and I'd see his car in the driveway, if he'd beaten us home, and everyone would cry, "Daddy's home!".
Today has been 4 weeks. And I am glad that these memories are starting to come, as hard as they are to bear, and we remember him when he was healthy, and well. and funny. and not in a hospital bed fighting for his life.