This story is dedicated to Lynn…
Sheets of rain drench my body but fail to dilute the thickness that swims around me. Circling my very soul like a hungry shark, sadness nibbles at every inch of my being. My feet sink down into the earth beneath me as I walk, barefoot, in the fields surrounding the house. My house. The house I grew up in. And with each step, I have to tug harder to release my feet from the mud; my steps feel heavy, just like my heart.
Thunder rolls across the land, shaking me, and lightning drips down from the sky toward the earth below. And this vicious storm reminds me that I am still alive and small and insignificant. That I have no power in this world.
I try to recall the sound of his voice in my mind, and I do, only it is faint and I barely detect it. Already, even this is fading from me too. A strong ache wraps itself around my heart, suffocating it. And I stop walking and close my eyes. Squeezing them shut, I force my mind to bring him to me. His smile. His eyes. The way his face scrunched up when he laughed. The way his lips would curve into the slightest of smiles when he said my name, even when he was mad at me.
The images and memories torment me. And I picture him there. Alone. Leaving this world. Leaving me. And it cripples me. Falling to the ground, I tilt my head to the heavens and clasp my hands near my chest, and pray. Ask. Beg. Hoping that not just anyone hears me, but that he hears me. This one last time.
“Please hear me. I love you,” I whisper at the wet sky.
And something happens. A coincidence, perhaps. But the rain stops. And those dark clouds open up. And the sun smiles down upon me. He smiles down upon me.
I wipe away the grief from my face and smile up at him. “I love you with all my heart, papa. And I will miss you. Always.”