Tuesday, February 4, 2014

I Will See You Again

December 1988

Sometimes I feel like my heart is breaking
But I stay strong and I hold on cause I know
I will see you again
This is not where it ends
I will carry you with me...
~Carrie Underwood

My uncle was 52 years old. He was the baby of five children. He was born and raised in the same town for his whole life. He was young at heart and loved Winnie the Pooh and Peanuts more than I could put down in words.

If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together, there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart... I'll always be with you. ~Winnie the Pooh

He was a hero and a confidante. He made me laugh at the moments I needed it the most. He sat in silence if that's what I needed too. Neither of us ever had to pretend who we were. If you were sad, you didn't have to pretend to be happy. He was the rock in my life that always made me feel safe. That safe, consistent sense in my life knowing that he'd always be around no matter what is gone. I miss you.

I was the first born of his five nieces. That picture was taken after bath time when I wasn't even a year old. And he made me just as happy as I made him in that picture. You won't find many pictures of him smiling or laughing because he didn't like pictures. But everyone who knew him knows that. I wish we'd taken more pictures together.

I wrote his obituary and his eulogy because I know that that's what he would have wanted. But he wouldn't have wanted a wake and a funeral at all. He didn't like to be the center of attention. I didn't want to do this. I just want him back.

At family gatherings, he'd hang on the outskirts taking it all in. We always sat within eye contact of each other. We had inside jokes of our own that a simple glance made us know we were thinking the same thing. Who will I share those jokes with now?

Some of my favorite moments, despite being considered a chore, were dishwashing. He'd wash and I'd dry. We'd share honest, candid conversations in our own world at the sink while hustle and bustle of family continued to our backs. Who will I wash dishes with now?

And then there were the times when I would visit him at Ada's. Or when I'd go with him on Costco trips. Or just for a ride in his big truck listening to Dean Martin or country music. I liked the way it smelled like him and how big it was compared to little me. I felt safe. I miss feeling safe.



Kristin said...

So sorry for your loss. I am sure he would have loved what you wrote for the eulogy. He's your guardian angel now.

Whitney @ EHFAR said...

I'm so sorry for your loss :-(

Jessica Bruno Vetter said...

I was just thinking today (and every day as I drive to or from work thinking about him in the quiet of my car) about how much I miss his voice. I printed my Facebook profile picture and put it at my desk...I can almost hear him laughing in it. He had this way of giving you a look, and like you said, you knew what he was thinking, and you would just laugh. Or he'd smirk and say something hilarious and you'd both laugh. The way you described him...I can just picture it and it makes me smile, laugh, and cry all at once.
The last time I saw him was at my parents' house...he showed me a piece of an old, broken keychain that he kept on his keys. When I was little, I gave him a big bird keychain that had broken off, but he kept the metal piece anyway. He didn't say why he kept it, but he didn't have to...little things meant so much to him.
My last moment with him was a hug goodbye at the door, and I remember saying how we never get to visit long enough. I wish I could hug him one more time.

Whitney Biber said...

i am truly so sorry for your loss, girl

Leeann @ Join the Gossip said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. It sounds like you've got some pretty great memories though. Thats' really special :)

Jessica Bruno Vetter said...

Just stopping by to say hello...hope you're doing okay!

Kelly said...

I'm so sorry to hear this. But what a beautiful tribute to him. It's clear to see he is loved.