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Oct 2017
Something as simple as refolding your sweater.
Pulling the grey fabric close to my chin.
When I put my cheek right up to that sweater,
I can feel it all.
Every single hug you ever gave me.
It breaks me down,
I have to take a break from reality
Escaping to a quiet, private room.
I sit down and I can feel.
You in this moment are here, so incredibly close to me,
In this moment I want to give you a million missed hugs.
There is so much I want to talk to you about.
So many things I want to ask you.
So many memories that you would have loved to be there for dad.
I wish I could have seen the look on your face,
At the end of Azlyn’s first dance recital?
She was our perfect little show stealer.
I would love to sit with you again.
Coffee in one hand, and a smoke in the other.
We could look at each other, with the feeling of succeeding.
While we smile the most genuine smiles
While we are filled with pride.
Staring at that amazing work of art,
That I can’t believe is my first baby girl.
She was your everything,
Please know Dad, you loved her well.
I am glad she saw papa, that she had you in her life.
The dad I remember, the amazing one with MS
That wasn’t quite so sick, wasn’t losing his strength.
That I didn’t have to help you with things.
Things you wanted to do, but you couldn’t anymore.
I am glad to know you trusted me more than anybody else,
After yourself.

I hold the sweater to my cheek and I close my eyes again.
I see my dad’s shoulders shaking, holding in a laugh.
When he knows the hilarious ending to a joke and no one else does.
I can see him once again ordering 56 pies individually delivered to his truck.  
On Saturday afternoons, while we sit out back.
Playing in the water,
Then I make you play market with me.
We **** some snails, as you laugh at me
I am in a flower girl dress from my cousins wedding.
I see us on saturday mornings at 5 am,
Watching rockin rhymes fairytales.
It was the only time the show was on.
I watched a taped one once, instantly hooked.
Then you spent the week reviewing the entire week
using the tv guide.
You found it for me.
You were so excited to tell me,
That I could watch my favourite show,
I loved our Saturdays together Dad.
We would watch the show,
Then listen to the radio show.
That would have the cartoon trivia call in contest.
Dad, you always knew the answer and we won
So many things, one sticks out the most.

We won tickets to Canada’s Wonderland.
I wanted to go so bad, I had never been anywhere like that.
Rides, actual roller coasters, a water park.
In places like that though, you would be stuck.
You would be left out just because of something as simple as a door frame.
But you were there, watching me
Maybe not the best view,
Probably not the way either of us wanted it.
But you were there dad watching me.

So when I held your sweater tonight I knew.
You are still watching me Dad,
With love and care in your heart.
It may not be the seat you wanted to have.
I know I wish that it wasn’t this way.
4 years after you died.
Folding a large grey woolen sweater tonight.
I felt you there with me, I got a hug from you.
I cried and you were there with me.
For the first time in four years I felt whole again.
Like I had a family again.
Someone believed in me,
Appreciated who I was just the way I am.
I love you Dad, and thank you for being in my life.
It was great seeing you again Dad,
Seeing your face again,
Hearing your voice,
Comforting my anxiety.
I was reminded that you are always watching me.
Just not from the ideal seat.
But then again it never was.
Ingrid Ohls
Written by
Ingrid Ohls  Guelph, ON
(Guelph, ON)   
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